Anesthesia Affects The Heart – Part 2 of 2
The patients in the etomidate group also had a 50 percent higher hazard of major cardiovascular problems than those in the propofol group, according to the study. Although the researchers found a higher risk of death and cardiac problems among patients who received etomidate compared to those who received propofol, the reading did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
The findings are “striking and troubling,” but the study is not the first to raise safety concerns over etomidate, Dr Matthieu Legrand and Dr Benoit Plaud, of Paris-Diderot University, in France, said in an accompanying annual editorial. “There is accumulating evidence for an association between mortality and etomidate use, both in critically ill patients and now in non-critically calamity patients undergoing noncardiac surgery”. Etomidate has only short-lasting effects, and it’s not clear how it could affect patients several weeks after surgery, Legrand and Plaud said. Large-scale studies are needed to select the safety of etomidate. Until then, it might be wise to use other anesthesia drugs, they suggested.