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A randomized, double-blinded comparison of ondansetron, droperidol, and placebo for prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting after supratentorial craniotomy



A randomized, double-blinded comparison of ondansetron, droperidol, and placebo for prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting after supratentorial craniotomy



Anesthesia and Analgesia 91(2): 358-361



Nausea or vomiting occurs frequently after craniotomy. Because of the need for frequent postoperative neurological assessment, an effective antiemetic with minimal sedative side effects is needed. Therefore, we compared ondansetron to droperidol in a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study. A total of 60 adults requiring elective supratentorial craniotomy received standardized IV anesthesia with 4 mg of ondansetron, 0.625 mg of droperidol, or placebo at skin closure. The incidence of postoperative nausea, emesis, pain and sedation scores, and rescue antiemetic use were recorded at 0, 0.5, 1, 4, 8, 12, 24, and 48 h. All groups were demographically similar. Differences existed for cumulative 8, 12, and 24h incidences of nausea (24 h, P = 0.03) and emesis (24 h, P = 0.04). Within 4 h, when maximal effect could be expected from treatment, 20% of the ondansetron group, 25% of the droperidol group and 50% of the placebo group received rescue antiemetic (P = 0.12). No differences in pain (P = 0.82) or sedation (P = 0.74) scores were detected. Both ondansetron and droperidol prevent nausea; however, only droperidol reduces emesis after supratentorial craniotomy. The dose of droperidol used was not more sedating than ondansetron. Sustained reduction in nausea and emesis over 24 h indicates a preemptive benefit of prophylactic antiemetic in this surgical population.

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Accession: 010091757

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PMID: 10910848

DOI: 10.1097/00000539-200008000-00023


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