Background: The administration of propofol for endoscopic sedation by a qualified person, other than the endoscopist, is safe and effective. The aim of this study was to determine if propofol can be administered safely and effectively by the endoscopist performing the procedure.
Methods: All patients referred for upper-GI EUS were eligible for inclusion in the study. Exclusion criteria included the following: age less than 18 years, American Society of Anesthesiology physical status class greater than 2, a potential for difficulty in airway maintenance, and allergy to propofol constituents. The endoscopist administered propofol as an intravenous bolus followed by a constant infusion. Adverse events, drug dosage, complications, and patient/endoscopist satisfaction were recorded.
Results: A total of 500 patients (285 women, 215 men; mean age 53.4 [14.8 years]) were enrolled. Mean propofol dose was 301 mg (range 100-1000 mg). Mean procedure time was 19 minutes (range 3-70 minutes). The required examination was completed in all cases. There was no major adverse event. Oxygen desaturation (oxygen saturation < 95%) occurred in 16 (3%) patients. There were 4 (1%) cases of mild hypoxemia (saturation < 90%) but no case of severe hypoxemia (saturation <85%). The endoscopist rated the 92% of the procedures as "very smooth" or "smooth" and regarded administration of propofol as "easy" for 92%. All patients said they would prefer the same method of sedation if the procedure were repeated.
Conclusions: Endoscopist-administered propofol is safe and effective in selected patients.