GLP-1 analogues and anesthesia: risks and precautions

GLP-1 analogues are medicines for diabetes and obesity. They delay gastric emptying, increasing the risk of bronchoaspiration during anesthetic procedures.

The use of GLP-1 analogues for the treatment of diabetes and weight loss has become increasingly common. However, an important side effect is delayed gastric emptying, which may lead to an increased risk of bronchoaspiration during anesthetic procedures. In this article, we will discuss GLP-1 analogues, their side effects, and the precautions needed to minimize risks during anesthesia.

What are GLP-1 analogues?

GLP-1 analogues are a class of medications used to treat type 2 diabetes and obesity. They mimic the action of GLP-1, a hormone produced by the intestine that stimulates insulin production and reduces glucose production by the liver. This helps control blood sugar levels and promote weight loss.

What are the side effects of GLP-1 analogues?

The most common side effects of GLP-1 analogues include nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. However, an important side effect is delayed gastric emptying, which may lead to an increased risk of bronchoaspiration during anesthetic procedures. This is because gastric contents can remain in the stomach longer than normal, increasing the risk of reflux and pulmonary aspiration.

Table of GLP-1 analogues

The table below presents the main analogues of GLP-1, their side effects and the time required to stop the medication before performing anesthesia.

GLP-1 analogue Side effects Interruption time
Liraglutide Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea 3 days
Exenatide Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea 24 hours
Dulaglutide Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea 10 days
Semaglutide Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea 21 days

Precautions during anesthesia

To minimize the risks of bronchoaspiration during anesthesia, it is important to carry out a good preoperative assessment. This includes assessing the risk of gastroesophageal reflux, the presence of a hiatal hernia, and other factors that may increase the risk of bronchoaspiration . Furthermore, it is important to follow the recommendations for stopping medication before carrying out anesthetic procedures.

Conclusion

GLP-1 analogues are a class of medications effective for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and obesity. However, they may increase the risk of bronchoaspiration during anesthetic procedures due to delayed gastric emptying. It is important to carry out a good preoperative assessment and follow medication interruption recommendations to minimize risks during anesthesia.

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