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Ann Thorac Surg. 2009 Mar;87(3):820-5. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2008.12.042.

Cerebral protection by lidocaine during cardiac operations: a follow-up study.

Author information

1
Department of Anaesthesiology, University of Auckland, Private Bag, Auckland, New Zealand. sj.mitchell@auckland.ac.nz

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

A previous study showed less postoperative neurocognitive impairment in open-chamber cardiac surgery patients given lidocaine for 48 hours after induction of anesthesia. In the present study, we aimed to test the benefit of a 12-hour infusion in a broader group of cardiac surgery patients, including those undergoing coronary artery bypass graft surgery.

METHODS:

This was a randomized, double-blind, intention-to-treat trial. Before cardiac surgery, 158 patients completed 7 neurocognitive tests and a self-rating scale for memory. They received a 12-hour infusion of either lidocaine in a standard antiarrhythmic dose or placebo, beginning at induction of anesthesia. The cognitive tests and memory scale were repeated at postoperative weeks 10 and 25. A deficit in any cognitive test was defined as a decline in score by more than or equal to the preoperative group standard deviation.

RESULTS:

All tests were completed by 118 and 107 patients at 10 and 25 weeks, respectively. The proportions of patients in the lidocaine and placebo groups exhibiting a deficit in one or more tests were as follows: 45.8% versus 40.7% at 10 weeks, and 35.2% versus 37.7% at 25 weeks (not significant). There were no significant differences between groups in self-ratings of memory function or length of intensive care unit or hospital stay.

CONCLUSIONS:

Lidocaine was not neuroprotective. The result of the previous trial may represent a type 1 error. Alternatively, benefit may be more likely for open-chamber surgery patients exposed to larger numbers of emboli or with a longer lidocaine infusion.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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