Goal-directed Perioperative Albumin Substitution Versus Standard of Care to Reduce Postoperative Complications: A Randomized Clinical Trial (SuperAdd Trial)

Stefan J. Schaller, Kristina Fuest, Bernhard Ulm, Sebastian Schmid, Catherina A.B. Bubb, Hans Henning Eckstein, Rüdiger Von Eisenhart-Rothe, Helmut Friess, Chlodwig Kirchhoff, Peter Luppa, Manfred Blobner, Bettina Jungwirth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate whether goal-directed albumin substitution during surgery and postanesthesia care to maintain a serum albumin concentration >30 g/L can reduce postoperative complications. Background: Hypoalbuminemia is associated with numerous postoperative complications. Since albumin has important physiological functions, substitution of patients with hypoalbuminemia is worth considering. Methods: We conducted a single-center, randomized, controlled, outcome assessor-blinded clinical trial in adult patients, American Society of Anesthesiologists physical status classification 3 to 4 or undergoing high-risk surgery. Patients, whose serum albumin concentration dropped <30 g/L were randomly assigned to goal-directed albumin substitution maintaining serum concentration >30 g/L or to standard care until discharge from the postanesthesia intermediate care unit. Standard of care allowed albumin substitution in hemodynamic instable patients with serum concentration <20 g/L, only. Primary outcome was the incidence of postoperative complications ≥2 according to the Clavien-Dindo Classification in at least 1 of 9 domains (pulmonary, infectious, cardiovascular, neurological, renal, gastrointestinal, wound, pain, and hematological) until postoperative day 15. Results: Of 2509 included patients, 600 (23.9%) developed serum albumin concentrations <30 g/L. Human albumin 60 g (40-80 g) was substituted to 299 (99.7%) patients in the intervention group and to 54 (18.0%) in the standard care group. At least 1 postoperative complication classified as Clavien-Dindo Classification ≥2 occurred in 254 of 300 patients (84.7%) in the intervention group and in 262 of 300 (87.3%) in the standard treatment group (risk difference -2.7%, 95% CI, -8.3% to 2.9%). Conclusion: Maintaining serum albumin concentration of >30 g/L perioperatively cannot generally be recommended in high-risk noncardiac surgery patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)402-409
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2024
Externally publishedYes


  • hypoalbuminemia
  • perioperative care
  • postoperative complications
  • randomized controlled trial
  • serum albumin


Dive into the research topics of 'Goal-directed Perioperative Albumin Substitution Versus Standard of Care to Reduce Postoperative Complications: A Randomized Clinical Trial (SuperAdd Trial)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this