Background: We investigated whether reversal of intraoperative atelectasis with the lung recruitment maneuver (RM) affects desflurane arterial concentrations during bariatric surgery.
Methods: After anesthetic induction and maintenance with propofol, patients were randomized to receive alveolar RM at intervals (RM group) or not (controls). Desflurane 6% was initiated, and rate of increase of alveolar desflurane concentration (ratio of end-expiratory to inspiratory concentrations, F(A)/F(I)) and desflurane blood concentrations were measured in both groups. Blood and end-tidal desflurane concentrations were also measured after the discontinuation of anesthesia.
Results: The RM group had higher intraoperative Pao(2)/Fio(2) compared with the control group (both, P < 0.001). During induction, the rate of increase in blood desflurane concentrations was rapid in both groups. At comparable mechanical ventilation settings, median times to achieve 0.5 mM (approximately 3%) were 2.1 and 1.59 min (P = 0.09) in the control and RM group, respectively. The times to achieve 0.7 mM (approximately 4.2%) desflurane were 15.9 and 9.3 min in the control and RM group, respectively (P = 0.08). Desflurane blood concentrations tended to be higher during the first 30 min after induction in the RM group (P = 0.066). During maintenance or emergence, the blood desflurane concentrations were not different between control and RM groups. Consequently, the time to eye opening did not differ between groups.
Conclusion: Although the RM during bariatric surgery represents an effective method for improving intraoperative oxygenation, it does not significantly affect the desflurane blood concentrations during anesthesia or its elimination during emergence.