In healthy children, an isotonic solution containing no glucose or a small amount of glucose (1-2%) has been recommended as an intraoperative maintenance fluid due to the potential risk of hyponatremia associated with hypotonic solutions. However, a hypotonic solution with glucose is still widely used as a maintenance fluid for pediatric anesthesia. We speculated that the hypotonic solution may worsen postoperative discomfort and irritability in pediatric patients due to hyponatremia.
In the current study, we compared the post-operative Face, Legs, Activity, Cry, Consolability(FLACC) scale scores of pediatric patients aged 3-10 years who received either a 1:2 dextrose solution or Hartmann’s solution during Nuss Bar removal.
The FLACC scale score in the post-anesthesia care unit was higher in the 1:2 dextrose solution group(HYPO) (n = 20) than in the Hartmann’s solution group(ISO) (n = 20) (6.30 vs 4.70, p = 0.044, mean difference and 95% Confidence Interval(CI) was 1.6 (0.04 to 3.16)). We also compared opioid consumption at the post-anesthesia care unit. Total dose of fentanyl per body weight in the post-anesthesia care unit was also higher in the HYPO (0.59 vs 0.37 mcg/kg, p = 0.042, mean difference and 95% CI was 0.22 mcg/kg (0.030 to 0.402)).
Intraoperative use of the hypotonic solution in children causes increased FLACC scale scores, leading to higher opioid consumption in post-anesthesia care unit.