DESIGN: A systematic review of the literature followed by a consensus-based voting process.
SETTING: A web-based international consensus conference.
PARTICIPANTS: Two hundred fifty-one physicians from 46 countries.
INTERVENTIONS: The authors performed a systematic literature search and identified all randomized controlled trials (RCTs) showing a significant increase in unadjusted landmark mortality among surgical or critically ill patients. The authors reviewed such studies during a meeting by a core group of experts. Studies selected after such review advanced to web-based voting by clinicians in relation to agreement, clinical practice, and willingness to include each intervention in international guidelines.
MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: The authors selected 12 RCTs dealing with 12 interventions increasing mortality: diaspirin-crosslinked hemoglobin (92% of agreement among web voters), overfeeding, nitric oxide synthase inhibitor in septic shock, human growth hormone, thyroxin in acute kidney injury, intravenous salbutamol in acute respiratory distress syndrome, plasma-derived protein C concentrate, aprotinin in high-risk cardiac surgery, cysteine prodrug, hypothermia in meningitis, methylprednisolone in traumatic brain injury, and albumin in traumatic brain injury (72% of agreement). Overall, a high consistency (ranging from 80% to 90%) between agreement and clinical practice was observed.
CONCLUSION: The authors identified 12 clinical interventions showing increased mortality supported by randomized controlled trials with nonconflicting evidence, and wide agreement upon clinicians on a global scale.
METHODS: We conducted a pragmatic, multicenter, single-blind, controlled trial at 36 centers in 13 countries. Patients scheduled to undergo elective CABG were randomly assigned to an intraoperative anesthetic regimen that included a volatile anesthetic (desflurane, isoflurane, or sevoflurane) or to total intravenous anesthesia. The primary outcome was death from any cause at 1 year.
RESULTS: A total of 5400 patients were randomly assigned: 2709 to the volatile anesthetics group and 2691 to the total intravenous anesthesia group. On-pump CABG was performed in 64% of patients, with a mean duration of cardiopulmonary bypass of 79 minutes. The two groups were similar with respect to demographic and clinical characteristics at baseline, the duration of cardiopulmonary bypass, and the number of grafts. At the time of the second interim analysis, the data and safety monitoring board advised that the trial should be stopped for futility. No significant difference between the groups with respect to deaths from any cause was seen at 1 year (2.8% in the volatile anesthetics group and 3.0% in the total intravenous anesthesia group; relative risk, 0.94; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.69 to 1.29; P = 0.71), with data available for 5353 patients (99.1%), or at 30 days (1.4% and 1.3%, respectively; relative risk, 1.11; 95% CI, 0.70 to 1.76), with data available for 5398 patients (99.9%). There were no significant differences between the groups in any of the secondary outcomes or in the incidence of prespecified adverse events, including myocardial infarction.
CONCLUSIONS: Among patients undergoing elective CABG, anesthesia with a volatile agent did not result in significantly fewer deaths at 1 year than total intravenous anesthesia. (Funded by the Italian Ministry of Health; MYRIAD ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT02105610.).