I.V. acetaminophen has limited benefit for colectomy patients, study finds

Acetaminophen administered orally controls pain after colorectal procedures just as well as much more expensive I.V. delivery, according to a first-of-its-kind study. Researchers at New York-based Mount Sinai reviewed data on 181,640 patients nationwide who underwent colectomy between 2011 and 2016. I.V.

Acetaminophen administered orally controls pain after colorectal procedures just as well as much more expensive I.V. delivery, according to a first-of-its-kind study. Researchers at New York-based Mount Sinai reviewed data on 181,640 patients nationwide who underwent colectomy between 2011 and 2016. I.V. acetaminophen was used in approximately a quarter of the surgeries; but the approach did not significantly lower postoperative opioid use. In fact, acetaminophen taken by mouth appeared to be equivalent or superior to I.V. administration, particularly in cases where patients received multiple doses on the day of surgery. The investigators believe I.V. acetaminophen may be an option for patients who cannot tolerate oral medication, but the findings do not support its routine use. Reporting in <I>Anesthesiology</I>, they recommend more research to pinpoint the optimal dosing regimen and appropriate types of procedures. While the current study demonstrates limited effects of I.V. acetaminophen after colectomy, the benefits could be more pronounced in other surgeries with a different patient population.