High Dose of Opioids Post-surgery Tied to NSCLC Recurrence

Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients who experienced disease recurrence half a decade after surgery received a significantly higher dose of opioids postoperatively, researchers said here.

Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients who experienced disease recurrence half a decade after surgery received a significantly higher dose of opioids postoperatively, researchers said here.

In a retrospectve study among patients treated for early-stage NSCLC, recurrence occurred in 26 who received a mean dose of 232 mg of opioids in the 96 hours after surgery compared with 124 mg of opioids administered to the 73 patients in whom there was no recurrence in 5 years (P=0.020), reported Dermot Maher, MD,from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, and colleagues.

"A suggested mechanism is the opioid-induced inhibition of natural killer cell's ability to scavenge tumor cell emboli during the 'decisive period'," the authors wrote in a poster presentation at the annual scientific meeting of the American Pain Society.

Maher said that in the decisive period right after surgery, natural killer cells find and destroy cancer cells that might have spilled during the perioperative period. Maher said that opioids tend to inhibit the natural killer cell activity.

Read the complete report here: http://bit.ly/1upKsEU

Source: medpage Today