The use of propofol sedation during endoscopic procedures has increased in recent years. The aim of this study was to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of nurse-administered low-dose propofol sedation for diagnostic esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD).
We prospectively assessed the outcome and complications of low-dose bolus propofol for endoscopic sedation for diagnostic EGD. Propofol was administered by bolus injection, with a standard protocol of 40 mg for patients <70 years old, 30 mg for patients 70-89 years old, and 20 mg for patients 90 years or older. When required for adequate sedation, additional doses were given, to a maximum of 120 mg. The primary outcome measure was respiratory depression, defined as oxygen desaturation (SpO(2) <90%) that continued for more than 20 s. Secondary measures included successful procedures, full recovery within 60 min of the procedure, and complications.
All procedures were successful; 8,431 of 10,662 patients (79.1%) completed diagnostic EGD with a single bolus of propofol. Only 0.26% (28 patients) required transient supplemental oxygen supply; neither mask ventilation nor endotracheal intubation was required. Full recovery occurred in 99.9% of patients 60 min after the procedure. Men and younger patients required significantly higher doses of propofol than did the women and older patients (men vs. women, 46.5+/-19 vs. 42.7+/-15 mg, P=0.0008; age 40-49 vs. age 50-59, 51.5+/-16 vs. 46.3+/-13 mg, P<0.0001). Of the 400 patients, 368 (92%) wanted to drive home or to their offices, and all did so without incident. A total of 99% were willing to repeat the same procedure again.
Low-dose nurse-administered propofol sedation is safe and practical for diagnostic EGD.