The Open Anesthesia Journal

Formerly: The Open Anesthesiology Journal

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Evaluation of Efficacy of Free Opioid Anesthesia for Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy: A Prospective, Randomized Double-blinded Study

Nguyen V. Luong1Nguyen T. Giang2, Hoang V. Chuong3, Nguyen M. Cuong3, Ngo V. Dinh3, Vũ Anh3, Mai D. Hanh3, Nguyen L.P. Thuy3, Le T. Son4, Nguyen T. Kien5, *
1 Critical Care Unit, National Burn Hospital, Vietnam Military Medical University, Hanoi, Vietnam
2 Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Military Hospital 103, Vietnam Military Medical University, Hanoi, Vietnam
3 Department of Anesthesia and Pain Medicine, Military Hospital 103, Vietnam Military Medical University, Hanoi, Vietnam
4 Hepato-Biliary-Pancreatic Surgery Department, Abdominal Surgery Center, Military Hospital 103, Vietnam Military Medical University, Vietnam
5 Centre of Emergency, Critical Care Medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Military Hospital 103, Vietnam Military Medical University, Vietnam



To evaluate efficacy and side effects of free opioid anesthesia for laparoscopic cholecystectomy.


A prospective study was performed on 94 patients undergoing laparoscopic cholecystectomy in Military Hospital 103 from May 2018 to February 2019. These patients were randomly allocated into two groups: patients in FOA (free - opioid anesthesia) group were administered lidocaine (2 mg/kg before induction and 1.5 mg/kg/h for maintenance), magnesium (30 mg/kg before induction and 1.5 g infusion for maintenance) combined with Intravenous (IV) injection of ketamine (0.5 mg/kg), and ketorolac (30 mg); while patients in OA group (opioid anesthesia) were provided with IV fentanyl (5 mcg/kg for induction and 1.5 mcg/kg every 30 minutes for maintenance of anesthesia). Both groups received total intravenous anesthesia by propofol. The depth of anesthesia was monitored by the entropy module during surgery. Neuromuscular blockade was reversed by sugammadex 2 mg/kg at the end of surgery. The postoperative analgesia was delivered using IV fentanyl for 48 to 72 hours. Visual Analog Scale (VAS) score was measured 10 mins, 20 mins, 1 hour, 2 hours and 3 hours after surgery.


All patients had an excellent quality of anesthesia with RE (Respond Entropy), SE (State Entropy) always under 60 from induction to abdominal closure without intraoperative awareness and postoperative recall of the operation; 100% of the patients were extubated immediately after surgery. In the first three postoperative hours fentanyl consumption in Group FOA was significantly lower than in Group OA (31.91 ± 3.98 mcg versus 34.47 ± 7.17 mcg, p=0,035). In the OA group, the rate of intraoperative hypotension was higher compared to its counterpart. Despite the higher risk of hypersalivation, group FOA had a significantly lower incidence of nausea and vomiting.


Free opioid anesthesia provided adequate sedation and amnesia and may be an alternative approach to opioid anesthesia for laparoscopic cholecystectomy. Patients under free opioid anesthesia experienced a lower incidence of intraoperative hypotension, lower rate of nausea, vomiting and lower demand for analgesia in the early postoperative period (0 - 3 h) compared to those receiving opioid anesthesia.

Keywords: Free opioid anesthesia, Laparoscopic cholecystectomy, Hypersalivation, Visual analog scale, Postoperative analgesia, Entropy.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2020
Volume: 14
First Page: 73
Last Page: 79
Publisher Id: TOATJ-14-73
DOI: 10.2174/2589645802014010073

Article History:

Received Date: 20/02/2020
Revision Received Date: 03/05/2020
Acceptance Date: 05/05/2020
Electronic publication date: 14/09/2020
Collection year: 2020

© 2020 Luong et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: ( This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Centre of Emergency, Critical Care Medicine and Clinical Toxicology, Military Hospital 103, Vietnam Military Medical University, Vietnam; Tel: 069698910; E-mail:

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