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      Comparison of ramosetron and ondansetron for the treatment of established postoperative nausea and vomiting after laparoscopic surgery: a prospective, randomized, double-blinded multicenter trial

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          Postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) is a common complication after surgery, which increases physical and psychological discomfort and delays recovery. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that ramosetron is comparable to ondansetron for the treatment of established PONV after laparoscopic surgery using a prospective, randomized, double-blinded, noninferiority study.


          Patients who had at least two risk factors of PONV and underwent laparoscopic surgery under general anesthesia were assessed for eligibility. Patients who developed PONV within the first 2 h after anesthesia received ondansetron (4 mg) or ramosetron (0.3 mg) intravenously in a randomized double-blind manner. Patients were then observed for 24 h after drug administration. The incidence of nausea and vomiting, severity of nausea, rescue antiemetic necessity, and adverse effects at 0–2 or 2–24 h after drug administration was evaluated. The primary endpoint was the rate of patients exhibiting a complete response, defined as no emesis and no further rescue antiemetic medication for 24 h after drug administration.


          Among the 583 patients, 210 (36.0%) developed PONV and were randomized to either the ondansetron (n=105) or ramosetron (n=105) group. Patient’s characteristics were similar between the groups. The complete response rate was 44.1% in the ondansetron group and 52.9% in the ramosetron group after 24 h of initial antiemetic administration. The incidence of adverse events was not different between the groups.


          We found evidence to support the noninferiority of ramosetron (0.3 mg) compared to ondansetron (4 mg) for the treatment of established PONV in moderate to high-risk patients undergoing laparoscopic surgery.

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          A simplified risk score for predicting postoperative nausea and vomiting: conclusions from cross-validations between two centers.

          Recently, two centers have independently developed a risk score for predicting postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV). This study investigated (1) whether risk scores are valid across centers and (2) whether risk scores based on logistic regression coefficients can be simplified without loss of discriminating power. Adult patients from two centers (Oulu, Finland: n = 520, and Wuerzburg, Germany: n = 2202) received inhalational anesthesia (without antiemetic prophylaxis) for various types of surgery. PONV was defined as nausea or vomiting within 24 h of surgery. Risk scores to estimate the probability of PONV were obtained by fitting logistic regression models. Simplified risk scores were constructed based on the number of risk factors that were found significant in the logistic regression analyses. Original and simplified scores were cross-validated. A combined data set was created to estimate a potential center effect and to construct a final risk score. The discriminating power of each score was assessed using the area under the receiver operating characteristic curves. Risk scores derived from one center were able to predict PONV from the other center (area under the curve = 0.65-0.75). Simplification did not essentially weaken the discriminating power (area under the curve = 0.63-0.73). No center effect could be detected in a combined data set (odds ratio = 1.06, 95% confidence interval = 0.71-1.59). The final score consisted of four predictors: female gender, history of motion sickness (MS) or PONV, nonsmoking, and the use of postoperative opioids. If none, one, two, three, or four of these risk factors were present, the incidences of PONV were 10%, 21%, 39%, 61% and 79%. The risk scores derived from one center proved valid in the other and could be simplified without significant loss of discriminating power. Therefore, it appears that this risk score has broad applicability in predicting PONV in adult patients undergoing inhalational anesthesia for various types of surgery. For patients with at least two out of these four identified predictors a prophylactic antiemetic strategy should be considered.
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            Postoperative nausea and vomiting. Its etiology, treatment, and prevention.

            In a recent editorial, Kapur described perioperative nausea and vomiting as "the big 'little problem' following ambulatory surgery."257 Although the actual morbidity associated with nausea is relatively low in health outpatients, it should not be considered an unavoidable part of the perioperative experience. The availability of an emesis basin for every patient in the postanesthesia recovery unit is a reflection of the limited success with the available therapeutic techniques.257 There had been little change in the incidence of postoperative emesis since the introduction of halothane into clinical practice in 1956. However, newer anesthetic drugs (e.g. propofol) appear to have contributed to a recent decline in the incidence of emesis. Factors associated with an increased risk of postoperative emesis include age, gender (menses), obesity, previous history of motion sickness or postoperative vomiting, anxiety, gastroparesis, and type and duration of the surgical procedure (e.g., laparoscopy, strabismus, middle ear procedures). Anesthesiologists have little, if any, control over these surgical factors. However, they do have control over many other factors that influence postoperative emesis (e.g., preanesthetic medication, anesthetic drugs and techniques, and postoperative pain management). Although routine antiemetic prophylaxis is clearly unjustified, patients at high risk for postoperative emesis should receive special considerations with respect to the prophylactic use of antiemetic drugs. Minimally effective doses of antiemetic drugs can be administered to reduce the incidence of sedation and other deleterious side effects. Potent nonopioid analgesics (e.g., ketorolac) can be used to control pain while avoiding some of the opioid-related side effects. Gentle handling in the immediate postoperative period is also essential. If emesis does occur, aggressive intravenous hydration and pain management are important components of the therapeutic regimen, along with antiemetic drugs. If one antiemetic does not appear to be effective, another drug with a different site of action should be considered. With the availability of new antiserotonin drugs, the incidence of recurrent (intractable) emesis could be further decreased. Research into the mechanisms of this common postoperative complication may help in improving the management of emetic sequelae in the future. As suggested in a recent editorial, improvement in antiemetic therapy could have a major impact for surgical patients, particularly after ambulatory surgery. Patients as well as those involved in their postoperative care look forward to a time when the routine offering of an emesis basin after surgery becomes a historical practice.
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              Consensus guidelines for managing postoperative nausea and vomiting.

              We present evidence-based guidelines developed by an international panel of experts for the management of postoperative nausea and vomiting.

                Author and article information

                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                Dove Medical Press
                26 March 2018
                : 14
                : 601-606
                [1 ]Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Anesthesia and Pain Research Institute, Severance Hospital, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea
                [2 ]Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Seoul National University Bundang Hospital, Seongnam, Republic of Korea
                [3 ]Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, College of Medicine, Ewha Womans University, Seoul, Republic of Korea
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Hee Jung Baik, Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, College of Medicine, Ewha Womans University, 1071 Anyangcheon-ro, Yangcheon-gu, Seoul 07985, Republic of Korea, Tel +82 2 2650 2868, Fax +82 2 2655 2924, Email baikhj@ 123456ewha.ac.kr

                These authors contributed equally to this work

                © 2018 Choi et al. This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited

                The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.

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