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Papers: 1 Jun 2024 - 7 Jun 2024

2024 Jun 04

Curr Opin Anaesthesiol


Remifentanil-induced hyperalgesia: the current state of affairs.


Vitin AA, Egan TD


Remifentanil-induced hyperalgesia (RIH) is a part of a general opioid-induced hyperalgesia (OIH) syndrome, seemingly resulting from abrupt cessation of continuous remifentanil infusion at rates equal or exceeding 0.3 mcg/kg/min. The intricate mechanisms of its development are still not completely understood. However, hyperactivation of the N-methyl d-aspartate receptor system, descending spinal facilitation and increased concentration of dynorphin (a κ-opioid ligand) are commonly proposed as possible mechanisms. Several ways of prevention and management have been suggested, such as slow withdrawal of remifentanil infusion, the addition of propofol, pretreatment with or concomitant administration of ketamine, buprenorphine, cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitors (NSAIDs), methadone, dexmedetomidine. In clinical and animal studies, these strategies exhibited varying success, and many are still being investigated.