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Effects of dexmedetomidine and propofol on sedation in patients after coronary artery bypass graft surgery in a fast-track recovery room setting

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We aim to compare the effects of propofol and dexmedetomidine infusions on extubation times, hemodynamic and respiratory functions, complication rates and patient satisfaction scores in patients undergoing coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery using a fast-track anesthesia regimen for early extubation.


We enrolled 64 patients who underwent CABG surgery. Dexmedetomidine (min 0.2 µg/kg/h–max 1.0 µg/kg/h) and propofol (min 1.0 mg/kg/h–max 3.0 mg/kg/h) infusion doses were titrated to give bispectral index values between 60 and 90 and a Ramsay sedation score (RSS) between 3 and 4. Postoperative extubation times, patient satisfaction and postoperative adverse events were recorded.


The mean times to extubation were 265.94 ± 43.1 min for the dexmedetomidine group and 322.52 ± 39.2 min for the propofol group (P < 0.001). In all recordings, RSS median values for the propofol group were significantly lower than the dexmedetomidine group (P < 0.05). There were no differences in the incidence of postoperative adverse events between the dexmedetomidine and propofol groups. There was a statistically significant difference between patient satisfaction median values of the two groups—7 (5–9) and 9 (7–10) (min–max) for the propofol and dexmedetomidine groups, respectively (P < 0.001).


Our results show that dexmedetomidine can easily be preferred over propofol in fast-track cardiac anesthesia due to its significant advantages of shorter extubation time and higher postoperative patient satisfaction scores.

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Correspondence to Zeki Tuncel Tekgul.

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Karaman, Y., Abud, B., Tekgul, Z.T. et al. Effects of dexmedetomidine and propofol on sedation in patients after coronary artery bypass graft surgery in a fast-track recovery room setting. J Anesth 29, 522–528 (2015).

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