Purpose: The purpose of this study was to assess whether the anesthetic type is associated with the prognosis of pathological stage I non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Methods: Clinicopathological data from 431 consecutive patients who underwent lobectomy for NSCLC between 2010 and 2016 were collected. Patients were classified into groups according to the type of anesthesia: propofol-based total intravenous anesthesia (TIVA) or inhalation anesthesia (INHA). We investigated the prognostic differences between these two groups. Results: A total of 72 patients in the TIVA group and 158 patients in the INHA group were eligible for the analysis. Recurrence was observed in 4 (5.6%) patients in the TIVA group and 19 (12.0%) patients in the INHA group (P = 0.159), and all-cause death occurred in 4 (5.6%) patients in the TIVA group and 24 (15.2%) patients in the INHA group (P = 0.049). The 5-year recurrence-free survival (RFS) and overall survival rates of the TIVA/INHA groups were 91.7%/77.4% and 94.4%/83.5%, respectively. TIVA was associated with a significantly better prognosis. A multivariable analysis of factors associated with RFS revealed that the type of anesthesia as a significant prognostic factor (P = 0.047). Conclusion: Propofol-based TIVA was associated with a better prognosis in comparison to INHA in patients with surgically resected pathological stage I NSCLC.
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