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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The pharmacoeconomics of neuromuscular blocking drugs: a perioperative cost-minimization strategy in children.

The purpose of this investigation was to compare the costs of intermediate-acting neuromuscular blocking drugs in children during routine ambulatory surgery. We studied 200 healthy, 2-10-yr-old children undergoing elective dental restorative surgery. During Part 1 of the study, children received an inhaled anesthetic with halothane and nitrous oxide, whereas in Part 2, the anesthetic was IV propofol with nitrous oxide. The study drugs were atracurium, cisatracurium, mivacurium, rocuronium, and vecuronium. Patients were initially administered 2x the effective dose for 95% of the study drug. After recovery to 10% of baseline neuromuscular function, the neuromuscular blockade was rigidly maintained with an infusion of the study drug at about 10% of baseline function. Neuromuscular drug costs were approximated as drug usage x cost/unit. The initial drug costs were not substantially different for both Parts 1 and 2, but over time, mivacurium became the most expensive drug and cisatracurium the least expensive. In conclusion, based on current costs, cisatracurium is the least expensive intermediate-acting neuromuscular drug. IMPLICATIONS: For children undergoing minor ambulatory procedures of 1-2 h, and continuous intraoperative neuromuscular blockade is indicated, cisatracurium currently is the least expensive drug.[1]


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