Preoperative Administration of Aprepitant to Prevent Postoperative Nausea and Vomiting in Children

Sarah Kukura, Natalie Slenkovich, Shabana Z. Shafy, Stephani Kim, Joseph D. Tobias


Background: Aprepitant (Emend), a neurokinin-receptor antagonist, has seen increased use in the treatment of nausea and vomiting in various clinical scenarios. To date, there are limited data regarding its use in the pediatric population. We retrospectively reviewed our experience with aprepitant after its addition to the operating room formulary for prevention of postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV).

Methods: The anesthetic records of patients who received aprepitant were retrospectively reviewed. Demographic, surgical, medication, and efficacy data were retrieved.

Results: The study cohort included 144 patients ranging in age from 7 to 17 years and in weight from 24.7 to 208.9 kg. The most common surgical procedures included gastrointestinal surgery, orthopedic surgery, and otolaryngologic procedures. Reasons for the administration of aprepitant included PONV prophylaxis due to risk factors such as type of surgery, duration of surgery, previous history of significant PONV, female gender, and family history of PONV. The majority of the patients (98.6%) received aprepitant in capsule form in a dose of 40 mg (97.9%). Seventeen patients (11.8%) had PONV or received antiemetic agents postoperatively. There were no unplanned admissions related to PONV. No adverse effects related to aprepitant were noted.

Conclusions: Aprepitant was effectively introduced to the preoperative regimen as an additional agent for the prevention of PONV. The overall tolerability and efficacy of aprepitant was similar to previous studies, even in a patient population at high risk for PONV.

J Curr Surg. 2022;12(1):1-6


Aprepitant; Postoperative nausea and vomiting; Pediatric anesthesia

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