Nondepolarising muscle relaxants (NDMRs) provide optimal conditions for tracheal intubation and improve surgical conditions. Several clinical conditions, diseases and pharmacological interactions have been suggested to cause resistance towards NDMRs that may translate into difficult intubation or inadequate operating conditions during surgery.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the current evidence of patient groups with resistance towards NDMRs. A prolonged onset time was defined as a difference that exceeded 25% compared with controls.
A systematic review of randomised controlled trials and cohort studies.
A comprehensive search was performed in 2016 in PubMed and EMBASE.
Patients with conditions or diseases, or patients taking medication, which lead to resistance towards current NDMRs (rocuronium, vecuronium, cisatracurium, atracurium, mivacurium and pancuronium). Included outcomes were onset time defined as the time between administration of NDMR to maximal (90, 95 or 100%) depression of baseline twitch height of the first twitch in a train-of-four.
Twenty-five studies were included. Strong evidence supports a prolonged onset time of rocuronium in patients with thermal injury and Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Moderate evidence supports a prolonged onset time of NDMRs during hypothermia and in patients with infection, oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy, liver cirrhosis treated with ulinastatin, when remifentanil is administered prior to administration of an NDMR, in fasting patients being rehydrated intravenously prior to administration of NDMR, in children with end-stage renal failure and in patients with atrial or ventricular septal defects.
A prolonged onset time should be suspected in patients with thermal injury and Duchenne's muscular dystrophy. Further, evidence supports a prolonged onset time in patients with infection, oculopharyngeal muscular dystrophy, congenital heart defects, kidney failure, liver cirrhosis treated with ulinastatin along with remifentanil or intravenous fluids administered prior to NDMR.
From the Department of Anaesthesiology, Herlev and Gentofte Hospital, University of Copenhagen, Herlev, Denmark (EL-M, ML-K, JB-S, CM-S, MV-M, MR-G)
Correspondence to Emilie L. Mørk, MD, Herlev Hospital, Herlev DK 2730, Region Hovedstaden, Denmark E-mail: email@example.com
Published online 3 April 2019
Supplemental digital content is available for this article. Direct URL citations appear in the printed text and are provided in the HTML and PDF versions of this article on the journal's Website (www.ejanaesthesiology.com).