Degree Name

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)

Document Type

Major Paper


School of Nursing




This integrative review compared anesthetic usage and its impact on the cancer patient. Immunosuppression from anesthesia can have major impacts on the human body’s immune system and lead to a decrease in overall patient survival and an increase in cancer recurrence rates. A search was completed using electronic databases including CINAHL, PubMed Health, and Medline Plus. The studies were located with keyword searches and inclusion and exclusion criteria was used to locate a final 8 studies for the review. A critical appraisal was completed using Polit and Beck’s critical analysis tables, displaying key characteristics of the studies chosen. Outcomes reviewed included overall survival rates, cancer recurrence rates, time to recurrence and biomarker identification. The findings presented more beneficial outcomes with regional anesthesia, but larger prospective randomized studies are needed to validate these findings. Regional anesthesia has shown to increase time to recurrence, decrease recurrence rates, and limit the increase in immune biomarkers. However, regional anesthesia does not fully support an increase in overall survival rates. More research and randomized control trials are warranted on this topic. Overall, this integrative review has supported the use of regional anesthesia for more positive outcomes in the oncological surgical patient over general anesthesia.

Included in

Nursing Commons