Review of evidence for the use of steroids in orthognathic surgery

Br J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2012 Mar;50(2):97-101. doi: 10.1016/j.bjoms.2010.11.019. Epub 2011 Feb 12.


Primarily, steroids are used routinely in orthognathic surgery to reduce swelling, but there is no nationally accepted regimen for the use of glucocorticoids in the UK. This article examines the evidence base for the use of steroids to reduce swelling, nausea, vomiting, and pain, and looks at evidence of the ratio of risks:benefits in orthognathic surgery and related publications. Evidence supports their use preoperatively, but the timing of this and their postoperative use may be contentious. The current regimens are associated with little morbidity and low cost. A well designed multi-centre study whose design would allow objective measures of swelling is required to resolve the areas of debate.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Glucocorticoids / adverse effects
  • Glucocorticoids / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / drug therapy*
  • Inflammation / prevention & control
  • Orthognathic Surgery / methods*
  • Pain, Postoperative / drug therapy*
  • Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting / drug therapy*
  • Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting / prevention & control
  • Risk Assessment
  • Steroids / adverse effects
  • Steroids / therapeutic use*
  • Trismus / drug therapy*
  • Trismus / prevention & control


  • Glucocorticoids
  • Steroids