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Guang Xu, Lan-lan Li, Zhen-tao Sun, Wei Zhang, Xue-ping Han
(Department of Anesthesiology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, Henan, China (mainland))
Ann Transplant 2016; 21:508-515
Because of the restricted data available on patients with postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD) in orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT), the goal of our study was to determine the outcome of dexmedetomidine (DEX) on POCD and the mechanism operating in OLT patients.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Our study included 80 patients randomly divided into 2 equal groups: the DEX group and the control group. In the DEX group, our patients received an initial dose of DEX at 1 µg/kg for 10 min followed by a continuous infusion at 0.3 µg/kg/h until the end of surgery. The control group received a saline treatment, and neurological tests were performed to assess the status of POCD. Serum level of b-amyloid protein (Aβ) and neuronal microtubule-associated protein (Tau) were measured at designated time points: at pre-operation (T1), 0.5 h after the anhepatic phase (T2), 2 h after the reperfusion of the new liver (T3), at the completion of operation (T4), at day 1 (T5), and at day 7 (T6) after the operation.
RESULTS: The incidence of POCD was significantly reduced in the DEX group (P=0.017). The score from the neurological tests was significantly decreased in the control group after the operation, but no statistical difference was observed in the DEX group. The DEX groups demonstrated a lower level of β-amyloid and Tau protein than those at the corresponding time points (T4~T6) in the control group (P<0.01).
CONCLUSIONS: Dexmedetomidine reduced the incidence of postoperative cognitive dysfunction in orthotopic liver transplantation patients. The decreased levels of b-amyloid and Tau protein may have contributed to this favorable outcome.
Keywords: Liver, Transplantation Conditioning