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Revista Brasileira de Anestesiologia

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Abstract

ALMEIDA, Maria Cristina Simões de. Neuromuscular blockers in Brazil. Rev. Bras. Anestesiol. [online]. 2004, vol.54, n.6, pp. 850-864. ISSN 0034-7094.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-70942004000600016.

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: There are no statistical data on the use of neuromuscular blockers in Brazil. This study aimed at statistically analyzing this topic. METHODS: Our study has compiled 831 answers to a questionnaire filled by anesthesiologists attending the 48th Brazilian Congress of Anesthesiology in Recife, 2001, and via Internet by anesthesiologists whose e-mail addresses are in the Brazilian Society of Anesthesiology web page (www.sba.com.br). The following data were evaluated: years of experience with the specialty, region where anesthesiologists practice, neuromuscular blockers (NMB) usage in order of preference, indications for succinylcholine, neuromuscular transmission monitor usage, blockade recovery criteria, neostigmine usage, NMB administration routes and description of observed complications. RESULTS: Most anesthesiologists practice for more than 11 years and the highest number of answers have come from the Southeastern region of Brazil. Most common NMB is atracurium, followed by pancuronium and succinylcholine. Succinylcholine is more frequently used for rapid sequence induction and in children (80% and 25%, respectively). Neuromuscular transmission monitors are never used by 53% of anesthesiologists, and 92% of them use clinical signs as blockade recovery criteria. Neostigmine is routinely used by 45% of professionals and 94% of them administer NMB in bolus. Approximately 30% have referred NMB-related complications. Most frequent complications were prolonged blockade, severe bronchospasm and residual curarization. CONCLUSIONS: Atracurium is the most popular neuromuscular blocker in Brazil; there is a high percentage of succinylcholine usage in non-emergency situations; neuromuscular transmission monitors are seldom used and, as a corollary, there is a significant percentage of clinical criteria to consider patients recovered. We have observed that approximately 30% of anesthesiologists had some type of NMB-related complication.

Keywords : NEUROMUSCULAR BLOCKERS.

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