An important variable in the operating room is the nonoperative time (NOT), the time between skin closure on a previous case and skin incision on the following case. Mismanagement of NOT can result in significant financial losses and delays in the operating room (OR) schedule, which can negatively impact efficiency and patient, surgeon, and staff satisfaction. NOT includes general anesthesia induction time (IT), emergence time (ET), and turnover time (TOT), and can be calculated by adding the 3 components. OR efficiency can be increased by applying parallel processing for general anesthesia induction and OR cleaning and reversal of neuromuscular blockade with sugammadex to reduce the 3 components of NOT without compromising patient safety.
This is a prospective, randomized study of 111 patients 18 to 75 years of age, American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) I–III, undergoing surgery requiring general anesthesia and muscle relaxation. Patients were randomly assigned to the control group (traditional linear processing for induction of anesthesia and OR cleaning and neuromuscular blockade reversal with neostigmine/glycopyrrolate) and the active group (parallel processing for induction of anesthesia and OR cleaning and neuromuscular blockade reversal with sugammadex). The primary outcome measured is the difference in the NOT. The secondary outcomes are surgeon and patient satisfaction.
NOT was significantly shorter in patients who underwent the parallel processing strategy and received sugammadex compared to the patients in the control group (25.0 [18.0–44.0] vs 48.0 [40.0–64.5] minutes; Cliff’ delta = 0.57; P < .001). After excluding the cases in the experimental group that were put into sleep in the OR (ie, the first case of the room), IT, ET, TOT, and NOT were further reduced and remained statistically significantly lower than the control group. Satisfaction scores from surgeons were significantly higher in the active group than in the control group (P < .001). There was no significant difference in the satisfaction scores of patients between the 2 groups.
Our study showed that interventions, such as parallel processing during induction of anesthesia and room cleaning instead of linear processing and the use of the faster-acting sugammadex instead of the combination of neostigmine and glycopyrrolate for the reversal of rocuronium-induced neuromuscular blockade, resulted in shorter IT, ET, TOT, and therefore NOT, in addition to higher surgeon’s satisfaction.
- Question: Is a reprocessing approach in the operating rooms along with the use of sugammadex instead of neostigmine/glycopyrrolate combination effective in reducing nonoperative time?
- Finding: Parallel processing during the induction of anesthesia and the use of sugammadex resulted in a significantly lower nonoperative time, better surgeon’s satisfaction without affecting the patient’s satisfaction, compared to the linear fashion with the use of neostigmine/glycopyrrolate.
- Meaning: A parallel processing paradigm in the operating room with the use of sugammadex increases operating room efficiency without altering the quality of care and satisfaction of patients.