The Effects of Apotel and Remifentanil on Postoperative Pain

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Context • One of the most common complications of a Caesarean section (C-section) is postoperative inflammation as well as operative and postoperative pain associated with the surgery. The control and mitigation of pain after surgery is the main goal of anesthesiologists. Objectives • This study aimed to compare the effects of intravenous apotel and remifentanil on postoperative pain control in women undergoing an elective C-section. Design • The research team designed a single-blinded, randomized clinical trial. Setting • The study was performed at the Taleghani Hospital (Arak, Iran). Participants • Potential participants were 70 patients undergoing an elective C-section. Intervention • Participants were divided randomly into 2 groups, the apotel (A) and remifentanil (R) groups, with 35 participants in each group. The participants in the A group received an infusion of 1 g of apotel to 200 cc of normal saline for 20 min, after anesthesia, the removal of their fetuses, and the clamping of their umbilical cords. The same procedure was followed for the R group (ie, the participants received an infusion of 0.5 µg of remifentanil per kg of body weight per minute after anesthesia), removal of their fetuses, and clamping of their umbilical cords. Outcome Measures • Pain scores were measured 3 times using a visual analogue scale during the recovery period (from anesthesia and pain scores) and at 4 and 12 h after surgery after surgery. Participants’ use of narcotics during the 24 h after surgery was recorded. Data analysis was done using SPSS (version 16) statistical software. Results • The pain scores of the R group were lower than those of the A group during the recovery period and a statistically significant difference existed between the pain scores of the 2 groups during that period (P = .01). No statistically significant difference existed between the groups in participants’ mean use of narcotic drugs during the 24 h of surgery. Moreover, no statistically significant differences were found between the groups in participants’ blood pressures or heart rates during the recovery period or at 4 and 12 h after surgery (P = .05). Conclusion • Remifentanil can provide better postoperative pain control than apotel immediately after surgery.