Electroencephalographic bispectral index correlates with intraoperative recall and depth of propofol-induced sedation

J Liu, H Singh, P F White
Anesthesia and Analgesia 1997, 84 (1): 185-9
The bispectral (BIS) index and 95% spectral edge frequency (SEF) of the electroencephalograph (EEG) have been used to study the anesthetic and sedative effects of intravenously (i.v.) administered drugs. This prospective study was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of the BIS index and 95% SEF for assessing the level of propofol-induced sedation and amnesia during regional anesthesia. Ten consenting adult patients undergoing surgery with regional anesthesia were administered propofol in increments of 10-20 mg i.v., every 5-10 min until they became unresponsive to tactile stimulation (i.e., mild prodding or shaking). The BIS index and 95% SEF were continuously recorded from a bifrontal montage (Fp1-Cz and Fp2-Cz) using the Aspect B500 monitor. The depth of sedation was assessed clinically at 5- to 10-min intervals using the observer's assessment of alertness/sedation (OAA/S) scale, with 1 = no response to tactile stimulation to 5 = wide awake. Each patient was shown a picture of an animal (cat) prior to administration of an initial dose of propofol, 40 mg i.v.. Subsequently, patients were administered intermittent bolus doses of propofol, 10-20 mg i.v., and shown different pictures upon achieving OAA/S scores of 4, 3, and 2 during the onset of and recovery from propofol-induced sedation. Picture recall was tested upon arrival of the patient in the postanesthesia care unit (PACU). Of the two EEG variables studied, the BIS index exhibited a better correlation with the OAA/S scores during both the onset (Spearman's rho = 0.744) and recovery (Spearman's rho = 0.705) phases of propofol-induced sedation. With the increasing depth of sedation, there was a progressive decrease in the BIS index (OAA/S score of 5, BIS = 94.5 +/- 2.9; 4, 93.3 +/- 3.3; 3, 89 +/- 6.1; 2, 80.1 +/- 8.7; 1, 75.6 +/- 7.5; mean +/- SD). Conversely, there was a progressive increase in the BIS value during recovery from propofol sedation (OAA/S score of 1, BIS = 75.6 +/- 7.5; 2, 82.4 +/- 10.5; 3, 84.9 +/- 5.9; 4, 93.8 +/- 0.8). Although the changes in the 95% SEF values were less consistent during the onset phase, this EEG variable increased from 16.4 +/- 5.0 to 19.3 +/- 5.6 as the OAA/S score increased from 1 to 4 during the recovery phase. Patient recall of the intraoperative pictures decreased with increasing depth of sedation and decreasing BIS values (OAA/S:% BIS:% recall = 5:94.5 +/- 2.9:100%; 4:93.4 +/- 3:63%; 3:87.3 +/- 6.1:40%; 2:80.8 +/- 8.3:0%; 1:75.6 +/- 7.5:0%). The BIS index appears to be a useful variable for assessing the depth of propofol-induced sedation. Increasing depth of sedation was associated with a significant decrease in intraoperative picture recall.

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