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Front Med (Lausanne). 2015 Dec 16;2:87. doi: 10.3389/fmed.2015.00087. eCollection 2015.

Alternative Therapies for the Prevention of Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting.

Author information

1
Department of Anesthesiology, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center , Columbus, OH , USA.
2
Department of Anesthesiology, Stony Brook University Medical Center , Stony Brook, NY , USA.
3
Department of Anesthesiology, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, Columbus, OH, USA; Department of Neuroscience, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, USA.
4
Department of Psychology, The Ohio State University , Columbus, OH , USA.
5
Department of Anesthesiology, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, Columbus, OH, USA; Department of Neurological Surgery, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, Columbus, OH, USA.

Abstract

Postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) is a complication affecting between 20 and 40% of all surgery patients, with high-risk patients experiencing rates of up to 80%. Recent studies and publications have shed light on the uses of alternative treatment for PONV through their modulation of endogenous opioid neuropeptides and neurokinin ligands. In addition to reducing PONV, hypnosis was reported to be useful in attenuating postoperative pain and anxiety, and contributing to hemodynamic stability. Music therapy has been utilized to deepen the sedation level and decrease patient anxiety, antiemetic and analgesic requirements, hospital length of stay, and fatigue. Isopropyl alcohol and peppermint oil aromatherapy have both been used to reduce postoperative nausea. With correct training in traditional Chinese healing techniques, acupuncture (APu) at the P6 acupoint has also been shown to be useful in preventing early PONV, postdischarge nausea and vomiting, and alleviating of pain. Electro-acupuncture (EAPu), as with APu, provided analgesic and antiemetic effects through release and modulation of opioid neuropeptides. These non-pharmacological modalities of treatment contribute to an overall patient wellbeing, assisting in physical and emotional healing.

KEYWORDS:

acupressure; acupuncture; alternative medicine; hypnosis; postoperative nausea and vomiting

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