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Papers of the Week

2021 Jan 15

Anesth Pain Med (Seoul)

Perioperative glucocorticoid management based on current evidence.


Seo K H
Anesth Pain Med (Seoul). 2021 Jan 15.
PMID: 33445232.


Glucocorticoid preparations, adreno-cortical steroids, with strong anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive effects, are widely used for treating various diseases. The number of patients exposed to steroid therapy prior to surgery is increasing. When these patients present for surgery, the anesthesiologist must decide whether to administer perioperative steroid supplementation. Stress-dose glucocorticoid administration is required during the perioperative period because of the possibility of failure of cortisol secretion to cope with the increased cortisol requirement due to surgical stress, adrenal insufficiency, hemodynamic instability, and the possibility of adrenal crisis. Therefore, glucocorticoids should be supplemented at the same level as that of normal physiological response to surgical stress by evaluating the invasiveness of surgery and inhibition of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis. Various textbooks and research articles recommend the stress-dose of glucocorticoids during perioperative periods. It has been commonly suggested that glucocorticoids should be administered in an amount equivalent to about 100 mg of cortisol for major surgery because it induces approximately 5 times the normal secretion. However, more studies, with appropriate power, regarding the administration of stress-dose glucocorticoids are still required, and evaluation of patients with possible adrenal insufficiency and appropriate glucocorticoid administration based on surgical stress will help improve the prognosis.