Postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) is a common complication of anesthesia and surgery and is defined as any nausea or vomiting occurring during the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery. It is one of the most common causes of patient dissatisfaction after anesthesia, occurring in 30% of all postoperative patients and up to 80% in high-risk patients.1 In addition, PONV is regularly rated in preoperative surveys as the anesthesia outcome the patient would most like to avoid.1
In a climate where the total cost of an illness is becoming increasingly important, PONV is a major contributor to direct and indirect costs for both the hospital and patient.2 The adverse effects of PONV range from patient-related distress, delayed discharge and recovery, and unexpected hospital admission to delayed return to work and family.2
Reducing the incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting and its associated problems provides opportunities to improve patient care and reduce utilization of scarce healthcare resources.
- Sébastien P, et al. Nausea and vomiting after surgery. Continuing Educ Anesth Crit Care Pain. 2013;13(1):28-32. doi:10.1093/bjaceaccp/mks046
- Hirsch J. Impact of postoperative nausea and vomiting in the surgical setting. Anaesthesia. 1994;49(suppl):30-33. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2044.1994.tb03580.x PMID: 8129160.
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