A comparison of fentanyl with tramadol during propofol-based deep sedation for pediatric upper endoscopy

Paediatr Anaesth. 2012 Feb;22(2):150-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-9592.2011.03707.x. Epub 2011 Sep 29.


Aim: This study was conducted to compare the efficacy and safety of tramadol with those of fentanyl and to evaluate the impact of age in pediatric patients undergoing upper gastrointestinal endoscopy (UGIE).

Methods: Eighty patients with ASA I-II, aged 1-16 years, undergoing UGIE were included in this study. Baseline anesthesia was maintained with 1 mg·kg(-1) propofol, and then, the patients were randomly assigned to receive 2 μg·kg(-1) fentanyl (group F, n = 40) or 2 mg·kg(-1) tramadol (group T, n = 40). Additional propofol, 0.5-1 mg·kg(-1), was administered when needed. Heart rate, mean arterial pressure, oxygen saturation (SpO(2)), and sedation scores were recorded at baseline, induction, and every 5 min. Endoscopy duration, recovery time, and adverse effects were recorded. The data were separated for subgroup analyses based on the age of 0-2, 2-12, and over 12 years.

Results: Fentanyl significantly decreased the saturation at induction, 5th min and 10th min in patients of 0-2 years; at 5th and 10th min in 2-12 years; and at 5th min in >12 years. In all age subgroups, sedation scores at 10th, 15th, and 20th min, the overall frequency of adverse effects, and the recovery time were significantly lower in group T compared with group F.

Conclusion: Tramadol in pediatric patients undergoing UGIE provided sedation as efficient as fentanyl with a better hemodynamic and respiratory stability and provided a superior safety and tolerance in younger children.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Airway Management
  • Analgesics, Opioid* / adverse effects
  • Anesthetics, Intravenous* / adverse effects
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Consciousness / physiology
  • Deep Sedation / methods*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Endoscopy, Digestive System / methods*
  • Female
  • Fentanyl* / adverse effects
  • Hemodynamics
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Movement / drug effects
  • Oxygen / blood
  • Propofol* / adverse effects
  • Prospective Studies
  • Tramadol* / adverse effects
  • Upper Gastrointestinal Tract


  • Analgesics, Opioid
  • Anesthetics, Intravenous
  • Tramadol
  • Oxygen
  • Fentanyl
  • Propofol