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Keywords:

  • complications: vomiting;
  • antiemetics;
  • droperidol, metoclopramide, granisetron

The antiemetic efficacy of droperidol, metoclopramide and granisetron was compared with placebo in the reduction of vomiting after paediatric surgery (the extremities; inguinal hernia; and phimosis) during general inhalational anaesthesia. One hundred children, ASA physical status I, 4–10 years of age, were enrolled in a prospectively, randomized, double-blind investigation and assigned to one of four treatment regimens: placebo (saline, n=25), droperidol (50 μg·kg1, n=25), metoclopramide (0.25 mg·kg-1, n=25) or granisetron (40 μg·kg-1, n=25). These drugs were administered intravenously (iv) after inhalation induction of anaesthesia. A complete response, defined as no emesis and no need for another rescue antiemetic during the first 24 h after anaesthesia, occurred in 60%, 76%, 68% and 88% of patients who had received placebo, droperidol, metoclopramide and granisetron, respectively (P<0.05; overall Fisher's exact probability test). The incidence of adverse events postoperatively was not different among the treatment groups. In conclusion, granisetron 40 μg·kg-1 is a better antiemetic than droperidol and metoclopramide when compared to placebo for the prevention of postoperative emesis in children.