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November 1960

Respiratory Depression with Intraperitoneal Neomycin

Author Affiliations

From the Surgical Service, Veterans Administration Hospital, Hines, Ill., and the Departments of Surgery, Chicago Medical School and the University of Illinois.; Clinical Assistant Professor of Surgery, Chicago Medical School (Dr. Mann); Clinical Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology, Department of Surgery, University of Illinois College of Medicine (Dr. Levin).

Arch Surg. 1960;81(5):690-698. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1960.01300050012003

Respiratory depression was not noted by the authors in more than 100 previous cases where neomycin had been instilled in the human peritoneal cavity (200 ml. of a 1% solution), but tidal volume measurements were not made in these instances.1 Pridgen2 reported four cases of respiratory arrest in which 0.5 gm. was instilled intraperitoneally in each of two infants and 3 gm. in each of two adults. The infants died. The adults survived after undergoing 3 and 48 hours of respiratory depression, respectively. Poth has noted respiratory arrest in animals and respiratory depression in an infant.3

A fatal adult case is reported in the American Society of Anesthesiologists Newsletter.4 This patient received 2 gm. intraperitoneally with respiratory arrest within 10 minutes. Webber5 reported a case in which 5 gm. was instilled in the peritoneal cavity, producing respiratory arrest with recovery after 15 hours of artificial

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