Background: Motion sickness (MS) may be a risk factor for postoperative vomiting (POV), but its independent predictive value in children is not known.
Methods: A convenience sample of 70 consecutive patients aged 1-16 years scheduled for elective surgery were questioned, a history of MS was sought and patients were observed for the subsequent development of POV.
Results: The overall incidence of POV was 29%. Fourteen children (20%) had a history of MS; MS-positive children were more likely to vomit than those who were MS-negative (P < 0.01). The type of surgery, use of opioids or prophylactic antiemetics did not differ significantly between the groups. The sensitivity of MS as a predictor of POV is 45% and the specificity 90%, giving a positive predictive value of 64.3% and a negative predictive value of 80.4%.
Conclusion: Motion sickness is associated with POV in this group of children, but its positive predictive value is fairly low.
- motion sickness
- postoperative vomiting
- prophylactic ondansetron
- unanticipated admission
- ambulatory surgery
- previous history