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January 16, 2019

Can Anesthesia Influence Cancer Outcomes After Surgery?

Author Affiliations
  • 1Signalling & Cancer Metabolism Team, Division of Cancer Biology, The Institute of Cancer Research, London, United Kingdom
  • 2Department of Anaesthesia, Mater University Hospital, University College Dublin, Ireland
  • 3Anaesthetics, Pain Medicine and Intensive Care, Department of Surgery and Cancer, Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College London, Chelsea & Westminster Hospital, London, United Kingdom
JAMA Surg. Published online January 16, 2019. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2018.4619

Surgery and pain induce stress and inflammatory responses that have radical effects on cellular and systems physiology, extending well beyond the time of surgery. There is a growing appreciation that, in the same way that mitigating the negative effects of such factors plays an important role in promoting wound healing and preventing complications (such as postoperative infections), surgery, anesthesia, and pain might also be associated with the risk of metastatic recurrence after cancer surgery. Naturally, speculation has followed that modifications of perioperative interventions, such as anesthetic or analgesic technique, may help reduce the postoperative incidence of metastasis and improve patients’ long-term survival.

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