The effect of paracetamol or diclofenac administered before operation on postoperative pain and behaviour after adenoidectomy in small children

Anaesthesia. 1992 Dec;47(12):1078-80. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2044.1992.tb04210.x.


We compared the effects of rectally administered diclofenac (12.5 mg) with paracetamol (125 mg) on pre- and postoperative behaviour and the need for supplementary analgesia in 44 children scheduled for adenoidectomy (with or without myringotomy). The study drugs were given in combination with diazepam (0.5 about 20 min before the children were taken to the operating theatre. On arrival there, the children who had received diclofenac were significantly quieter (< 0.05), easier to handle (p < 0.01) and cried less (p < 0.05) than those in the paracetamol group. During recovery, children in the diclofenac group needed fewer supplementary doses of intravenous pethidine than those receiving paracetamol (p < 0.001). There were no obvious differences between the groups in intra-operative bleeding (as estimated by the surgeon), or in measured blood loss. No postoperative complications became evident. The pre-operative rectal administration of diclofenac for pain relief after adenotomy is safe and effective.

MeSH terms

  • Acetaminophen / administration & dosage*
  • Adenoidectomy
  • Administration, Rectal
  • Child Behavior / drug effects
  • Child, Preschool
  • Crying
  • Diclofenac / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Pain, Postoperative / prevention & control*
  • Premedication*
  • Psychomotor Agitation / prevention & control


  • Diclofenac
  • Acetaminophen