Somatostatin, anaesthesia, and the carcinoid syndrome.
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A patient with carcinoid syndrome on long-term antiserotonin therapy with parachlorophenylalanine, experienced a flushing attack with hypotension during the prophylactic administration of aprotonin prior to the induction of anaesthesia. When she was subsequently prepared with a long-acting somatostatin analogue, octreotide (Sandostatin, Sandoz SMS 201-995), plasma levels of tumour-released hormones were reduced and anaesthesia for resection of hepatic metastases was uneventful. The advantages of an anaesthetic approach based on inhibition of carcinoid tumour activity, rather than antagonism of released hormones, are discussed.
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