Background: Postoperative nausea and vomiting is one of the most common anaesthetic complications of caesarean section. This study examined the association between hyperemesis gravidarum during pregnancy and nausea and vomiting after caesarean section.
Methods: A single-centre, retrospective cohort study, using electronic databases of patients with and without hyperemesis gravidarum, undergoing caesarean section from 2015 to 2019. The incidence and severity of postoperative nausea and vomiting were established by a review of the documentation of administration of postoperative anti-emetics within the 24-h period after surgery, and examined using univariable, multivariable binary and ordered logistic regression models.
Results: Data were compared for 76 patients with hyperemesis gravidarum and 315 patients without the condition. The incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting in the hyperemesis group versus the non-hyperemesis group was 43.4% vs 29.6%, respectively. The odds of experiencing postoperative nausea and vomiting was 1.95 times higher in women with hyperemesis gravidarum than in those without (aOR 1.95, 95% CI 1.13 to 3.36, P=0.016). The odds of having more severe postoperative nausea and vomiting were greater in the hyperemesis gravidarum group (aOR 1.91, 95% CI 1.14 to 3.20, P=0.014).
Conclusion: Patients with hyperemesis gravidarum are more likely to develop nausea and vomiting after caesarean section, and this is likely to be of greater severity than in those without the condition. This finding should assist the effective provision of intra-operative and postoperative anti-emetics for patients with hyperemesis gravidarum undergoing caesarean section.