Pain on propofol injection (POPI) is a minor problem that all anesthetists face every day. Introduction of several new formulations and hundreds of clinical trials have failed to find its remedy with just one intervention in all patients. This article highlights the causes of POPI and interventions that are used to eliminate this pain in current practice. Relevant articles from Medline and Embase databases were searched and included in this descriptive review with the following conclusions: (1) POPI is due to irritation of venous adventitia leading to release of mediators such as kininogen from kinin cascade. (2) When two or more drugs or measures are used, the incidence of POPI decreases considerably. Hence, the approach to eliminating POPI should be multimodal. (3) Any regimen that includes a drug having local anesthetic effect combined with central sedative/analgesic and rapid injection into a large vein should definitely reduce the risk of POPI to negligible levels.
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