Clinical research
Remifentanil patient-controlled analgesia for labor – monitoring of newborn heart rate, blood pressure and oxygen saturation during the first 24 hours after delivery
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Submission date: 2011-09-15
Final revision date: 2012-01-10
Acceptance date: 2012-02-08
Online publication date: 2012-10-30
Publication date: 2013-08-31
Arch Med Sci 2013;9(4):697–702
Introduction: There is no available information about the effects of remifentanil labor analgesia on newborns’ vital signs in the first hours after delivery. The aim of the study was to assess changes in the heart rate, blood pressure and oxygen saturation during the first 24 h of neonatal life after using remifentanil patient-controlled analgesia (PCA) for labor analgesia.
Material and methods: Forty-four full-term neonates, 23 from intravenous PCA remifentanil labor anesthesia 0.2 µg/kg, repeated not more frequently than every 2 min, and 21 born to mothers without any pharmacological forms of analgesia, were studied. Heart rate, oxygen saturation, and systolic (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) were monitored using a Nellcor Oxi Max monitor N5500 (Tyco Healthcare), and recorded at 1 h, 6 h, 12 h and 24 h.
Results: No significant differences in heart rate (p = 0.54; p = 0.26; p = 0.60; p = 0.83), oxygen saturation (p = 0.21; p = 0.27; p = 0.61; p = 0.9) and DBP (p = 0.98; p = 0.31; p = 0.83; p = 0.58) between the groups at 1 h, 6 h, 12 h and 24 h. Newborns from the remifentanil group had lower SBP at 1 h of life (59 mm Hg vs. 68.5 mm Hg) but the difference was just on the borderline of statistical significance (p > 0.06). There were no significant differences in SBP between the groups at 6 h (p = 0.65), 12 h (p = 0.11), and 24 h (p = 0.89) of life.
Conclusions: Remifentanil PCA analgesia during labor does not significantly modify the oxygen saturation, heart rate and blood pressure in infants during the first day of their life. Therefore, further studies are needed to explain the observed trend for arterial hypotension in the first hour of life in infants born to mothers treated with remifentanil.