Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Surgery Considerations for those with Kennedy's Disease

This topic has come to the surface again. A friend who is currently in the hospital discussed his concerns of using certain anesthesia after receiving some information from a doctor familiar with Kennedy's Disease.

"Important:  A known issue has been reported by Dr. Neil Porter. Do not used  SUCCINYLCHOLINE (generic name). Brand names include Anectine and Quelicin.  Please have your medical file updated.This drug could be life threatening for a person with Kennedy's Disease."

Certain types of anesthesia have been known to cause or create problems for those of us living with this condition. There is an entire page on the KDA website on this subject. Also on this page are several other items to discuss with your doctor and anesthesiologist prior to surgery.

The key message is to make the surgery team aware of your condition and to provide them with information on possible issues with certain anesthetics and also on potential post-surgery concerns.

When I was scheduled for surgery several years ago to repair a broken tibia and fibula, I brought in a copy of the webpage mentioned above. After my doctor read the information and discussed it with the anesthesiologist, they decided on a different course of action.


  1. Hi Bruce,
    My wife I really appreciate all you do to make this blog meaningful and relevant. Our son, 37, has been diagnosed and my wife is the carrier. Should she have the same concerns about anesthetics used in surgery as you described above?

  2. Thanks for your kind comments, Jack.

    I am not a doctor, so that is a question for the surgeon as long as he is made aware of the potential issues. Being that a carrier has one good 'x' chromosome, and the symptoms are normally less severe and usually very late onset, the potential problems might not be an issue. Again, ask her doctor.


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