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Article
December 1988

'Anesthetic' Doses of Fentanyl

Author Affiliations

Knoxville, Tenn

Arch Surg. 1988;123(12):1525. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1988.01400360095018
Abstract

To the Editor.—I read with interest the article in the January 1988 issue of the Archives by Klausner et al,1 after this article was brought to my attention by a surgical colleague. Certainly respiratory depression and muscular rigidity are well-described side effects from the administration of fentanyl2-4 and other narcotic drugs.

Two points need to be made regarding this article. First, the use of 55 to 75 μg/kg of fentanyl in a general surgical population is not a moderate dose but is a high dose fentanyl anesthesia. It is in these doses that fentanyl can be used as the primary anesthetic agent and are, therefore, considered not analgetic doses but "anesthetic" doses. I feel there is a great potential for confusion in the medical community if this is not clearly understood. Second, any patient receiving 55 to 75 μg/kg of fentanyl for a surgical procedure of

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