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  1. Smith, Angela DNAP, CRNA, CCRN
  2. Silvestro, Loraine PhD
  3. Rodriguez, Ricardo E. PhD
  4. Austin, Paul N. PhD, CRNA


Sedating patients undergoing advanced endoscopic procedures such as endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) is challenging for the endoscopy team. Considering these challenges and concerns with the use of propofol for deep sedation of older adults and high-risk patients, colleagues of one of the authors (AS) were interested in the identification of techniques for the anesthetic management of subjects undergoing therapeutic ERCP. A search strategy revealed a total of 7 evidence sources. The appraised evidence examined the efficacy and sedation-related effects of anesthesia regimens. Deep sedation with propofol was identified as the most commonly used anesthetic technique for subjects undergoing therapeutic ERCP. The sedation-related unwanted effects of propofol appear to be dose-related and occur more frequently in the high-risk and elderly populations. However, the data were inconclusive in identifying an ideal agent offering superior efficacy with fewer unwanted sedation-related effects. Providers should strongly consider the subject's age, history of coexisting illness, and the pharmacological effects of selected anesthetic agents when choosing an appropriate anesthetic technique. Larger randomized controlled studies are needed to identify risk factors associated with sedation-related complications and to identify alternative options for the anesthetic management of subjects undergoing ERCP.