Immunological Insights into Opioid-Free Anaesthesia in Oncological Surgery: A Scoping Review

Laura Smith* (Corresponding Author), Juan P. Cata, Patrice Forget

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose of Review
The influence of opioids on outcomes after cancer surgery when used, or avoided, intraoperatively remains unclear. There is a need to conduct a scoping review to explore the wider context and provide direction for future research. The review will examine the current state of evidence in humans, with a focus on immunological biomarkers and clinically relevant cancer outcomes in trials comparing opioid-free to opioid-based general anaesthesia.

Recent Findings
There is limited research on this subject area, which is mainly focused on breast cancer. The most frequently evaluated immunological parameter is the neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio. Cancer outcomes are mainly focused on recurrence.

The central knowledge gap is understanding how the cellular effects of opioids translate into longer-term patient outcomes. The major challenge for future research is accounting for the immunomodulatory effects of a wide range of confounding factors, which have yet to be clarified.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCurrent Oncology Reports
Early online date28 May 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 28 May 2022


  • Opioid-free anaesthesia
  • Cancer
  • Immune response
  • Surgery


Dive into the research topics of 'Immunological Insights into Opioid-Free Anaesthesia in Oncological Surgery: A Scoping Review'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this