What can help treat nausea and vomiting after surgery?

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Arthur W. Perry, MD
Plastic Surgery
Nausea and vomiting are incredibly common after general anesthesia and even after intravenous sedation. Often narcotics given during surgery are the culprits. But many different anesthetic drugs also cause nausea. During surgery most surgeons and anesthesiologists give patients a combination of a steroid called Decadron, and either Zofran or Anzemet. While the drugs are helpful, 20% of patients still develop nausea and vomit. Often the only cure for this type of nausea is sleep. It takes hours to rid the body of the anesthetic drugs that caused the nausea. Most nausea is gone by the morning after surgery. Nausea that persists is usually due to the continued use of narcotics such as codeine or Percocet.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.