The effects of interrupted or continuous administration of sevoflurane on preconditioning before cardio-pulmonary bypass in coronary artery surgery: comparison with continuous propofol

Anaesthesia. 2008 Oct;63(10):1046-55. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2044.2008.05563.x. Epub 2008 Jul 8.


Volatile anaesthetics have been shown to exert cardioprotective properties in experimental and clinical studies. However, the mode of administration may influence these cardioprotective effects. The present study was designed to compare the effect of interrupted administration of sevoflurane before cardiopulmonary bypass with continuous sevoflurane administration and with propofol-only anaesthesia, on cardioprotection as assessed by left ventricular performance and myocardial cell damage during coronary artery bypass grafting. Forty-two patients scheduled for coronary bypass surgery were randomly assigned to one of three groups: propofol-only (P; n = 14), continuous (SevoC; n = 14) and interrupted sevoflurane administration (SevoI; n = 14). Myocardial cell damage as assessed by Troponin T (cTNT) and creatine kinase MB (CK-MB) were chosen as the primary endpoints and echocardiographic myocardial performance index (MPI) measurements were also performed. Up to 48 h postoperatively, in group SevoI, postoperative cTNT values (mean (SD) 0.13 (0.04) ng x ml(-1)) were significantly (p < 0.05) lower than both the P (0.26 (0.31) ng x ml(-1)) and SevoC (0.25 (0.17) ng x ml(-1)) groups. CK-MB levels were also significantly (p < 0.05) lower in the SevoI group at 24 h after surgery and MPI significantly improved compared with both the P and SevoC groups. There was, however, no difference with respect to cytokine release and length of stay in either the intensive care unit or in the hospital. We conclude that prior interrupted sevoflurane administration confers some cardioprotection as compared with continuous sevoflurane administration or propofol-based anaesthesia.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Anesthetics, Inhalation / administration & dosage*
  • Anesthetics, Intravenous / administration & dosage
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Cardiopulmonary Bypass*
  • Cardiotonic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Creatine Kinase, MB Form / blood
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Echocardiography, Transesophageal
  • Female
  • Hemodynamics / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Ischemic Preconditioning, Myocardial / methods*
  • Male
  • Methyl Ethers / administration & dosage*
  • Middle Aged
  • Propofol / administration & dosage
  • Sevoflurane
  • Troponin T / blood


  • Anesthetics, Inhalation
  • Anesthetics, Intravenous
  • Biomarkers
  • Cardiotonic Agents
  • Methyl Ethers
  • Troponin T
  • Sevoflurane
  • Creatine Kinase, MB Form
  • Propofol