Multimodal pain management is the use of combinations of medications from different classes or medications with different routes of delivery to optimize pain relief. The adjunctive use of multiple analgesic agents is associated with better pain relief and fewer adverse effects. Intravenous acetaminophen offers a relatively low risk, safe adjunct to multimodal therapy. A comparative retrospective chart review showed that adult patients undergoing laparoscopic appendectomy or cholecystectomy surgery who received intravenous acetaminophen in the operating room had a reduced opioid requirement directly after surgery, in the post anesthesia care unit. A total of 34 doses of opioids (Fentanyl and Dilaudid) were given to the group who received the intravenous acetaminophen as compared to 65 doses of the same opioids given to the group that did not. Since only two surgical procedures were studied, the results may not be applicable to other surgical procedures. Additionally, the small sample size (60 patient charts) was a noted limitation. Data is consistent with previous studies supporting the use of intravenous acetaminophen to help reduce the amount of opioid use postoperatively Because of its relatively safe profile, intravenous acetaminophen should be thoughtfully considered when addressing pain management in the operative setting.
Green, Linda M., "The Relationship Between The Use Of Intravenous Acetaminophen During Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy And Appendectomy Surgery And The Use Of Intravenous Opioids After Surgery" (2013). Master of Science in Nursing. 34.