Background: Opioids are associated with numerous adverse effects. It is unclear if reduced postoperative opioid consumption lowers the incidence and severity of opioid-related adverse effects. This analysis -- from a multicenter, randomized, double-blind trial -- tested if the reduction of opioid consumption among patients who received intravenous preoperative parecoxib 40 mg, followed by oral valdecoxib 40 mg qd postoperatively, in Days 1-4 after outpatient laparoscopic cholecystectomy surgery, reduced opioid-related symptoms.
Methods: Patients received intravenous fentanyl for pain before discharge, and oral acetaminophen 500 mg hydrocodone 5 mg q 4-6 h prn postdischarge for up to 7 days postsurgery. Patients also received intravenous parecoxib 40 mg administered 30-45 min preoperatively, and valdecoxib 40 mg qd up to Day 4 and prn Days 5-7 postsurgery, or placebo. Patients completed an opioid-related Symptoms Distress Scale (SDS) questionnaire every 24 h for 7 days. Opioid use was converted to morphine-equivalent doses (MEDs). Clinically meaningful events (CMEs) for 12 opioid-related symptoms were assessed by three ordinal measures: frequency, severity, and bothersomeness. Reduction of CMEs on Day 1 and number of patient-days with CMEs on Days 1-4 were examined.
Results: Cumulative MEDs on Day 0, Day 1, and Days 1-4 were significantly lower in the parecoxib/valdecoxib group compared with the placebo group (P < 0.001). At the end of Day 1, parecoxib/valdecoxib-treated patients had significantly lower SDS scores (P < 0.02), a significantly reduced incidence of CMEs (P < 0.05), and significantly fewer patient-days with CMEs in Days 1-4 than placebo patients (P < 0.05). Patients in the parecoxib/valdecoxib group were less likely to have CMEs for multiple symptoms than those in the placebo group (P < 0.001).
Conclusions: Treatment with parecoxib and valdecoxib significantly reduced the cumulative MED requirements, the incidence of opioid-related adverse effects, and patient-days with CMEs.