Primer of postoperative pruritus for anesthesiologists

Beverly Waxler*, Zerin P. Dadabhoy, Ljuba Stojiljkovic, Sara F. Rabito

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


Postoperative itching is an important problem in the postoperative care unit. Pruritus after surgery may be drug induced (including intrathecal opioids) or secondary to a preexisting systemic disease. Mechanisms of itching are complex and not completely understood. The purpose of this review is to high-light new discoveries in pathways and mechanisms of pruritus and to summarize up-to-date knowledge about treatment of itching after surgery. More basic and clinical studies are needed to address the effects of drugs on specific receptors and improve the treatment of postoperative pruritus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)168-178
Number of pages11
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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