The hemodynamic effects of intravenous paracetamol (acetaminophen) vs normal saline in cardiac surgery patients: A single center placebo controlled randomized study

Elizabeth Chiam, Rinaldo Bellomo, Leonid Churilov, Laurence Weinberg

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Abstract

The hemodynamic effects of intravenous (IV) paracetamol in patients undergoing cardiac surgery are unknown. We performed a prospective single center placebo controlled randomized study with parallel group design in adult patients undergoing elective cardiac surgery. Participants received paracetamol (1 gram) IV or placebo (an equal volume of 0.9% saline) preoperatively followed by two postoperative doses 6 hours apart. The primary endpoint was the absolute change in systolic (SBP) 30 minutes after the preoperative infusion, analysed using an ANCOVA model. Secondary endpoints included absolute changes in mean arterial pressure (MAP) and diastolic blood pressure (DPB), and other key hemodynamic variables after each infusion. All other endpoints were analysed using random-effect generalized least squares regression modelling with individual patients treated as random effects. Fifty participants were randomly assigned to receive paracetamol (n = 25) or placebo (n = 25). Post preoperative infusion, paracetamol decreased SBP by a mean (SD) of 13 (18) mmHg, p = 0.02, compared to a mean (SD) of 1 (11) mmHg with saline. Paracetamol decreased MAP and DBP by a mean (SD) of 9 (12) mmHg and 8 (9) mmHg (p = 0.01 and 0.02), respectively, compared to a mean (SD) of 1 (8) mmHg and 0 (6) mmHg with placebo. Postoperatively, there were no significant differences in pressure or flow based hemodynamic parameters in both groups. This study provides high quality evidence that the administration of IV paracetamol in patients undergoing cardiac surgery causes a transient decrease in preoperative blood pressure when administered before surgery but no adverse hemodynamic effects when administered in the postoperative setting.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0195931
Number of pages12
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume13
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 16 Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes

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