Current Issue - September/October 2022 - Vol 25 Issue 6


  1. 2022;25;491-500Effect of Continuous Infusion of Intravenous Nefopam on Postoperative Opioid Consumption After Video-assisted Thoracic Surgery: A Double-blind Randomized Controlled Trial
    Randomized Controlled Trial
    Susie Yoon, MD, PhD, Hyo Bin Lee, MD, Kwon Joong Na, MD, Samina Park, MD, Jaehyon Bahk, MD, PhD, and Ho-Jin Lee, MD.

BACKGROUND: Although nefopam has been reported to have opioid-sparing and analgesic effects in postsurgical patients, its effectiveness in video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) is unknown.

OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to investigate the opioid-sparing and analgesic effects of perioperative nefopam infusion for lung resection.

STUDY DESIGN: Double-blinded randomized controlled trial.

SETTING: Operating room, postoperative recovery room, and ward at a single tertiary university hospital.

METHODS: Ninety patients scheduled for elective VATS for lung resection were randomized to either the nefopam (group N) or control group (group C). Group N received 20 mg nefopam over 30 minutes immediately after the induction of anesthesia. Nefopam was administered continuously for 24 hours postoperative, using a dual-channel elastomeric infusion pump combined with fentanyl-based intravenous patient-controlled analgesia. Group C received the same volume of normal saline as nefopam solution administered in the same manner. The primary outcome measure was fentanyl consumption for the first postoperative 24 hours. The secondary outcome measures were the cumulative fentanyl consumption during the first postoperative 48 hours, pain intensity at rest and during coughing evaluated using an 11-point numeric rating scale, quality of recovery at postoperative time points 24 hours and 48 hours, and the occurrence of analgesic-related side effects during the first postoperative 24 hours and postoperative 24 to 48 hour period. Variables related to chronic postsurgical pain (CPSP) were also investigated by telephone interviews with patients at 3 months postoperative. This prospective randomized trial was approved by the appropriate institutional review board and was registered in the registry.

RESULTS: A total of 83 patients were enrolled. Group N showed significantly lower fentanyl consumption during the first postoperative 24 hours and 48 hours (24 hours: median difference: -270 µg [95%CI, -400 to -150 µg], P < 0.001); 48 hours: median difference: -365 µg [95% CI: -610 to -140 µg], P < 0.001). Group N also showed a significantly lower pain score during coughing at 24 hours postoperative (median difference, -1 [corrected 95% CI: -2.5 to 0], adjusted P = 0.040). However, there were no significant between-group differences in the postoperative quality of recovery, occurrence of analgesic-related side effects, length of hospital stay, and occurrence of CPSP.

LIMITATIONS: Despite the significant opioid-sparing effect of perioperative nefopam infusion, it would have been difficult to observe significant improvements in other postoperative outcomes owing to the modest sample size.

CONCLUSION: Perioperative nefopam infusion using a dual-channel elastomeric infusion pump has a significant opioid-sparing effect in patients undergoing VATS for lung resection. Therefore, it could be a feasible option for multimodal analgesia in these patients.

KEY WORDS: Analgesia, analgesics, opioid, lung neoplasms, nefopam, perioperative care, postoperative pain, thoracic surgery, video-assisted