Background: Most GI endoscopies use sedation to keep patients comfortable during procedures, but sedation puts patients at increased risk of complications. Most of the available studies reporting sedation-related complications are retrospective and dated. There is a lack of prospective studies investigating sedation-related complications and their associated risk factors.
Study design: Prospective study.
Setting: Thirty-nine hospitals in Germany.
Synopsis: Using data collected from 314,190 adult endoscopies in which sedation was used, this study identified that there was only a 0.01% rate of major complications. Major complications for this study included intubation, ICU admission, resuscitation, or death. Propofol was the most commonly used sedative (61.7% of cases) and had the lowest risk of complications (odds ratio, 0.7509; P = .028). The top risk factors for complications were an American Society of Anesthesiologists class greater than 2 (OR, 2.2998; P less than .001), emergent need for the endoscopy (9 of the 13 fatal cases), and longer procedure length (P less than .001).
Bottom line: GI endoscopic procedures with sedation are tolerated well in the general population and have low risk of complications.
Citation: Behrens A et al. Acute sedation-associated complications in GI endoscopy (ProSed 2 Study): Results from the prospective multicentre electronic registry of sedation-associated complications. Gut. 2018 Jan 3..
Dr. Ally is a hospitalist at UC San Diego Health and an assistant clinical professor at the University of California, San Diego.