Effects of the opioid remifentanil on olfactory function in healthy volunteers

Citation
J. Lotsch et al., Effects of the opioid remifentanil on olfactory function in healthy volunteers, LIFE SCI, 69(19), 2001, pp. 2279-2285
Citations number
43
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Biochemistry & Biophysics
Journal title
LIFE SCIENCES
ISSN journal
0024-3205 → ACNP
Volume
69
Issue
19
Year of publication
2001
Pages
2279 - 2285
Database
ISI
SICI code
0024-3205(20010928)69:19<2279:EOTORO>2.0.ZU;2-3
Abstract
The effects of opioids on human subjective olfactory function have rarely b een investigated. This is despite the fact that opioid receptors are widely distributed throughout the olfactory systems. Using an established validat ed test of subjective olfactory function, olfactory threshold, odor discrim ination and odor identification performance were tested in 16 healthy volun teers before opioid administration and at steady state after 3 hours remife ntanil infusion. Each one man and one women were assigned randomly to one o ut of eight predefined remifentanil target plasma concentrations: 0, 1.2, 1 .8, 2.4, 3, 3.6, 4.8, and 6 ng/ml. In the thirteen subjects that had comple ted the tests, olfactory thresholds were elevated with increasing remifenta nil dose, and this correlated statistically significant with the remifentan il dose. Remifentanil plasma concentrations were linearly related to change s in olfactory thresholds. In contrast, effects of remifentanil on odor dis crimination and identification were not statistically significant. However, remifentanil target plasma concentrations were also significantly correlat ed with the subjects' ratings of tiredness and drowsiness, although only dr owsiness was significantly correlated with the differences in odor threshol ds. We conclude that opioid administration leads to impaired olfactory func tion expressed in raised olfactory thresholds. This is compatible with prev iously reported opioidergic effects at the level of the olfactory bulb. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science Inc. All rights reserved.