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Michael Jackson, Propofol and Patient Safety

Posted Sep 15 2009 12:00am

Pretty much as expected now that pop icon Michael Jackson has a confirmed death due to the home use of Propofol, people are worried about their use of the drug.

The ironic thing about this is that Propofol is safe (in the right situation of course) and preferred by many anesthesiologists for short procedures as it wears off quickly and obviates the need for much in the way of narcotics. Patients have fewer side effects like nausea and vomiting. We use it in cosmetic surgery all the time.

As an expert reviewer for the California medical board I know of only one death involved in its use and it was due to inadequate monitoring.

Propofol was of course never approved for home use.

Best Regards,

John Di Saia MD

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