Background: A recent survey revealed that extensive off-label use of sugammadex in pediatric anesthesia deserved particular attention. The present study with trial sequential analysis (TSA) aimed to evaluate the effects of sugammadex for antagonizing neuromuscular blockade (NMB) in pediatric patients, and to investigate whether the findings achieved the required information size to draw conclusions.
Methods: PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library and China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI) were searched from inception to April 2021. All randomized controlled trials used sugammadex as reversal agent in pediatric patients were enrolled. Time from NMB reversal to recovery of the train-of-four ratio (TOFr) to 0.9 and extubation time were considered as co-primary outcomes, and incidences of adverse events were considered as secondary outcomes. Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) system was used to rate the quality of evidences.
Results: Data from 18 studies involving 1,065 pediatric patients were acquired. The results revealed that use of sugammadex was associated with shorter duration from administration of reversal agents to TOFr > 0.9 (MD = -14.42, with 95% CI [-17.08, -11.75]) and shorter interval from reversal from NMB to extubation (MD = -13.98, with 95% CI [-16.70, -11.26]) compared to control groups. TSA also indicated that the current sample sizes were sufficient with unnecessary further trials. Analysis of secondary outcomes indicated that administration of sugammadex was associated with less incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV), bradycardia, and dry mouth compared to control groups.
Conclusion: Considering of satisfactory and rapid neuromuscular blockade reversal with low incidences of adverse events, sugammadex might be considered as the preferred option for children in clinical anesthesia practice compared to acetylcholinesterase inhibitors. However, overall low-quality evidences in present study rated by GRADE system indicated that superiority of sugammadex employed in pediatric patients needs to be confirmed by more studies with high quality and large sample size in future.
Bingchen Lang, Lu Han, Linan Zeng, Qianqian Zhang, Shouming Chen, Liang Huang, Zhijun Jia, Qin Yu, Lingli Zhang (2022) Efficacy and safety of sugammadex for neuromuscular blockade reversal in pediatric patients: an updated meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials with trial sequential analysis. BMC Pediatr 22(1):295. doi: 10.1186/s12887-022-03288-0.