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Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2005 Jan;28(1):2-9.

[Sedation in upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. Analysis of tolerance, complications and cost-effectiveness].

[Article in Spanish]

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Servicio de Gastroenterología, Hospital del Bierzo, Ponferrada, León, Spain.



Sedation of patients is an important complement to endoscopic procedures. The aim of this study was to analyze tolerance, complications and cost-effectiveness in patients undergoing diagnostic upper gastrointestinal endoscopy.


A total of 357 patients were prospectively studied: 138 non-sedated, 116 sedated with midazolam and 103 sedated with midazolam and meperidine. Subjective tolerance, tolerance perceived by the endoscopist, complications, and cost-effectiveness were evaluated. The Chi-square test was used for the statistical analysis. P-values of less than 0.05 were considered statistically significant.


Subjective tolerance was greater in patients sedated with midazolam and meperidine than in the other groups (p < 0.05). Tolerance perceived by the endoscopist was greater in the group sedated with both drugs than in the group sedated with midazolam (p < 0.05). Subjective tolerance was better in sedated men and women but there was no association between sedation and perceived tolerance according to sex. Subjective tolerance was better in sedated patients older than 70 years than in those younger than 40 years (p < 0.05). Complications were more frequent in sedated patients and the most frequent complication in all the groups studied was mild desaturation; there was a significant difference between the group sedated with midazolam and meperidine and the non-sedated group (p < 0.05). Non-sedation had the best cost-effectiveness ratio but sedation with midazolam and meperidine was the most effective alternative.


From the point of view of the endoscopist, endoscopy can be performed without sedation, although subjective tolerance is greater in patients sedated with midazolam and meperidine. Non-sedation is more cost-effectiveness than sedation but if sedation is required midazolam and meperidine achieve better results in terms of effectiveness than midazolam alone.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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