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Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology and Metabolism

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Volume 28, Issue 11-12


The effect of intraoperative administration of dexamethasone for PONV prophylaxis on perioperative blood glucose level in obese and normal weight children

Richard Gnatzy
  • Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, University Hospital, Leipzig, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Gunther Hempel
  • Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, University Hospital, Leipzig, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Udo X. Kaisers
  • Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, University Hospital, Leipzig, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Claudia Höhne
  • Corresponding author
  • Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, University of Leipzig, Liebigstr. 20, D-04103 Leipzig, Germany
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2015-07-18 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jpem-2014-0529


Background: The incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) can be reduced by dexamethasone. Single-dose administration may cause elevated blood glucose levels in obese adults. No data are available for children.

Objective: The aim was to evaluate perioperative blood glucose changes related to body weight in children who received dexamethasone.

Patients and methods: This prospective observational study included 62 children. All patients received total intravenous anesthesia and a single dose of dexamethasone (0.15 mg/kg, maximum 8 mg). Blood glucose levels were measured up to 6 h. Standard deviation scores (SDS) were calculated using age- and gender-specific body mass index (BMI) percentiles, p<0.05.

Results: A total of 62 children (11.5±2.9 years, median SDS 0.43, 29% overweight/obese) were included. Blood glucose levels increased from 5.52±0.52 to 6.74±0.84 mmol/L 6 h after dexamethasone without correlation to the BMI-SDS.

Conclusions: This study showed an increase of perioperative blood glucose (normoglycemic ranges) after single dose of dexamethasone, but no BMI-dependent effect was observed in children. Therefore, low-dose dexamethasone may be used in obese children for PONV prophylaxis.

Keywords: antiemetics; blood glucose; dexamethasone; postoperative nausea; vomiting


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About the article

Corresponding author: Claudia Höhne, MD, Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine, University of Leipzig, Liebigstr. 20, D-04103 Leipzig, Germany, Phone: +49 341 97 19705, Fax: +49 341 97 17709, E-mail:

Received: 2014-12-23

Accepted: 2015-05-18

Published Online: 2015-07-18

Published in Print: 2015-11-01

Citation Information: Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology and Metabolism, Volume 28, Issue 11-12, Pages 1287–1292, ISSN (Online) 2191-0251, ISSN (Print) 0334-018X, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jpem-2014-0529.

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