Preoperative management and features of induction of anaesthesia in acute bowel obstruction (clinical lecture)


  • M.М. Pylypenko Shupyk National Medical Academy of Postgraduate Education, Kyiv, Ukraine
  • M.V. Bondar Shupyk National Medical Academy of Postgraduate Education, Kyiv, Ukraine



acute bowel obstruction, regurgitation, aspiration of gastric contents, preparation for intubation, rapid sequence induction, Sellick’s manoeuvre


This article presents the main approaches to the pre-operative preparation of patients with severe acute bowel obstruction and emphasizes that this preparation should be limited in time and don’t delay the surgery. In severe bowel obstruction, in addition to a thorough assessment of vital functions and determination of leading physiologic disorders, it is extremely important to examine patients using specific scales which allow determining the risks of major complications. General anaesthesia usually is the method of choice for acute bowel obstruction; however, it could be supplemented by regional anaesthesia to improve intra- and postoperative pain relief. While preparing for general anaesthesia, first of all, it is necessary to determine the risks of difficult airway and complicated intubation, as well as regurgitation and aspiration of gastric contents, which allows you to purposefully approach the choice of intubation techniques and prevent the occurrence of these formidable complications. Sellick’s manoeuvre is no longer required in these patients, and instead of it during intubation, bimanual laryngoscopy can be used. Arterial hypotension is a common complication during induction of anaesthesia in severe bowel obstruction, and such patients should always be treated with infusion therapy, and their fluid and electrolyte disturbances should be corrected. At the same time, to prevent intestinal oedema and the development of intra-abdominal hypertension, infusion therapy should be limited both in time and in volume. If hypovolemia cannot be completely corrected, vasopressors should be given prophylactically to reduce the risk of significant arterial hypotension during rapid sequence induction.


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