Home E-Weekly November 2, 2010

Post-Op Relief for Lap Chole Patients

Published: November 1, 2010

A small amount of steroids may improve the speed and quality of patients' recoveries from laparoscopic cholecystectomies, according to a recent study.

In a study presented at the American Society of Anesthesiologists' annual meeting last month, researchers suggest that an intraoperative dose of dexamethasone can beat back lap chole's common post-op complications, including nausea, vomiting, pain, fatigue and dizziness.

"Many of the unpleasant symptoms that prevent a return to normal activities during the first few days after surgery can be reduced with a single dose of dexamethasone in the OR," says study co-author Glenn S. Murphy, MD, of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine

For the study, Dr. Murphy and colleagues surveyed 120 patients who underwent lap chole procedures and had been given either dexamethasone or a placebo during it.

Not only did the dexamethasone group report less post-op pain and discomfort in the 24 hours following surgery, reducing the need for pain medications, they also reported an improved mood and energy. Plus, their average length of stay in the outpatient department was 70 minutes shorter than the placebo group.

David Bernard

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