We evaluated the feasibility of use and effects on postoperative atelectasis and complications of lower inspired oxygen fraction (FIO) compared to conventional oxygen therapy.
Single center, randomized clinical trial.
University hospital, operating room and postoperative recovery area.
One hundred ninety patients aged ≥50 with an American Society of Anesthesiologists physical status of I-III who underwent abdominal surgery with general anesthesia.
Participants were randomly assigned to either the low FIO group (intraoperative: FIO 0.35, during induction and recovery: FIO 0.7) or the conventional FIO group (intraoperative: FIO 0.6, during induction and recovery: FIO 1.0).
The primary outcome was postoperative atelectasis measured with lung ultrasonography at postoperative 30 min in the post-anesthesia care unit (consolidation score: each region 0-3, 12 region, total score range of 0 to 36, a lower score indicating better aeration).
Seven patients in the low FIO group were omitted from the study due to changing FIO during intervention (7/95 (8.4%) vs. 2/95 (2.1%), p = 0.088; low FIO group vs. conventional FIO group). Overall, atelectasis was detected in 29.7% (51/172) of patients 30 min after surgery by lung ultrasound and 40.1% (69/172) of patients after 2 days after surgery by chest X-ray. The scores of lung ultrasonography and the incidence of significant atelectasis (consolidation score ≥ 2 at any region) were lower in the low FIO group than in the conventional FIO group (median [IQR]: 3 [1,6] vs. 7 [3,9], p < 0.001 and 17/85 (20%) vs. 34/87 (39%), RR: 0.512 [95% CI: 0.311-0.843], p = 0.006, respectively). The incidence of surgical site infection and length of hospitalization were not significantly different between the two groups.
Based on our findings, decreased inspired oxygen fraction during anesthesia and recovery did not cause hypoxic events, but instead reduced immediate postoperative atelectasis. The use of intraoperative conventional higher inspired oxygen did not afford any clinical advantages for postoperative recovery in abdominal surgery.

Copyright © 2021. Published by Elsevier Inc.