Temperature control and recovery of bowel function after laparoscopic or laparotomic colorectal surgery in patients receiving combined epidural/general anesthesia and postoperative epidural analgesia

Giorgio Danelli, Marco Berti, Valeria Perotti, Andrea Albertin, Paolo Baccari, Francesco Deni, Guido Fanelli, Andrea Casati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We compared the effects of a laparoscopic (n = 23) versus laparotomic (n = 21) technique for major abdominal surgery on temperature control in 44 patients undergoing colorectal surgery during a combined epidural/general anesthesia. A thoracic epidural block up to T4 was induced with 6-10 mL of 0.75% ropivacaine; general anesthesia was induced with thiopental, fentanyl, and atracurium IV and maintained with isoflurane. Core temperature was measured with a bladder probe and recorded every 15 min after the induction. In both groups, core temperature decreased to 35.2°C (range, 34°C-36°C) at the end of surgery. After surgery, normothermia returned after 75 min (60-120 min) in the Laparoscopy group and 60 min (45-180 min) in the Laparotomy group (P = 0.56). No differences in postanesthesia care unit discharge time were reported between the two groups. The degree of pain during coughing was smaller after laparoscopy than laparotomy from the 24th to the 72nd observation times (P <0.01). Morphine consumption was 22 mg (2-65 mg) in the Laparotomy group and 5 mg (0-45 mg) in the Laparoscopy group (P = 0.02). The time to first flatus was shorter after laparoscopy (24 h [16-72 h]) than laparotomy (72 h [26-96 h]) (P = 0.0005), and the first intake of clear liquid occurred after 48 h (24-72 h) in the Laparoscopy group and after 96 h (90-96 h) in the Laparotomy group (P = 0.0005). Although laparoscopic surgery provides positive effects on the degree of postoperative pain and recovery of bowel function, the reduction in heat loss produced by minimizing bowel exposure with laparoscopic surgery does not compensate for the anesthesia-related effects on temperature control, and active patient warming must also be used with laparoscopic techniques.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467-471
Number of pages5
JournalAnesthesia and Analgesia
Volume95
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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