The Society of Surgical Oncology, inc.
The American Society of Breast Surgeons.
Annals of Surgical Oncology

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Intraoperative Ketorolac Use Does Not Increase the Risk of Bleeding in Breast Surgery

Kristin E. Rojas MD, Thais A. Fortes MD, Peter Flom PhD, Donna-Marie Manasseh MD, Charusheela Andaz MD, Patrick Borgen MD
Breast Oncology
Volume 26, Issue 10 / October , 2019



The use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is an effective adjunct in managing perioperative pain. We sought to determine if the use of intraoperative ketorolac as part of a multimodal ERAS protocol increased the risk of bleeding complications in breast surgery.


A subset analysis of a prospective cohort study including patients undergoing lumpectomy and mastectomy compared two groups: those who received intraoperative ketorolac and those who did not. Bleeding complications were compared using Fisher’s exact test or t test, and analyzed with respect to surgical modality. Patients undergoing immediate reconstruction were excluded.


Seven hundred and fifty-eight breast surgeries were performed in a 13-month period: 157 lumpectomy patients and 57 mastectomy patients met inclusion criteria between July 2017 and August 2018. Two hundred and fourteen patients were included in the analysis: 115 received ketorolac and 99 did not. The two groups were similar with regards to sex, age, race, tobacco use, and comorbidities. When analyzed together, there was no difference in bleeding complications between the group that received intraoperative ketorolac and those who did not (2% vs. 2.6%, p = 1.00). No hematomas occurred in the lumpectomy patients, and three occurred in mastectomy patients: one of which received ketorolac, and two did not (5.9% vs. 5.0%, p = 0.575). The rates of seroma, infection, or dehiscence were not significantly different between the two groups, regardless of surgical modality.


The use of intraoperative ketorolac is a useful adjunct in perioperative pain management in breast surgery and does not increase the risk of bleeding.

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