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October 1959

Effect of Perphenazine on Postoperative Emesis

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery of the Long Island College Hospital.

AMA Arch Surg. 1959;79(4):666-669. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1959.04320100132022

Emesis during the immediate postoperative period creates three major hazards: dehydration, electrolyte imbalance, and delayed alimentation. In addition the stress during retching and vomiting may disrupt fresh wounds, in particular those of the upper abdomen. It therefore seems desirable to seek medication which may offer alleviation of this rather common aftermath of systemic anesthesia and surgical therapy.

Attempts to protect dogs against vomiting induced by apomorphine have shown that perphenazine has significantly greater antiemetic potency than other phenothiazines in current use.1,2 In the human, clinical experience reported by others3-5 supports its effectiveness. Prophylactic or therapeutic administration of perphenazine has been shown to be extremely effective when given parenterally before or after surgery to protect against postoperative emesis. In double-blind studies among surgical patients, perphenazine reduced the incidence of emesis from 18% to 6% in a series of 610 patients,6 from 48% to 25% in a series of

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