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Medicine (Baltimore). 2019 Jan;98(3):e14209. doi: 10.1097/MD.0000000000014209.

Effect of preoperative smoking cessation on postoperative pain outcomes in elderly patients with high nicotine dependence.

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Department of Anesthesiology.
Department of Neurosurgery, First Hospital of Jilin University, Changchun, China.



To investigate the effect of smoking cessation before surgery on postoperative pain and analgesic consumption after thoracoscopic radical resection of lung cancer in elderly patients with high nicotine dependence.


A total of 107 male patients, ages 60 to 70 years, undergoing elective thoracoscopic radical lung cancer surgery from July 2017 to July 2018 were enrolled into 3 groups: group A (highly nicotine-dependent and discontinued smoking <3 weeks before surgery, n = 36), group B (highly nicotine-dependent and discontinued smoking >3 weeks before surgery, n = 38), and group C (nonsmokers, n = 33). Postoperative sufentanil consumption, visual analog scale (VAS) pain scores at rest and during cough, rescue analgesia, opioid-related adverse events, and patient satisfaction were assessed from 0 to 48 h postoperatively.


Patient characteristics were comparable among the 3 groups. Sufentanil consumption and VAS pain scores from postoperative 0 to 48 h were significantly higher in groups A and B than in group C. In addition, group B had lower sufentanil consumption and pain scores than group A. No differences in the need for rescue analgesia, patient satisfaction, or occurrence of postoperative adverse events, including nausea, vomiting, respiratory depression, and oversedation, were observed among the 3 groups.


Compared with nonsmokers, highly nicotine-dependent male patients who were deprived of cigarettes experienced more severe pain and required treatment with more sufentanil after thoracoscopic radical lung cancer surgery. Moreover, preoperative smoking cessation at least 3 weeks before surgery led to better postoperative pain outcomes than smoking cessation within 3 weeks of surgery.

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