Project Summary

This research project is in progress. PCORI will post the research findings on this page within 90 days after the results are final.

What is the research about?

Each day in the United States, more than 50,000 patients receive general anesthesia for surgery. With general anesthesia, doctors give patients medicines to bring on a sleep-like state and keep patients from feeling pain during surgery. 

Doctors use two main types of general anesthesia. The first type is total intravenous anesthesia, or TIVA. Doctors give TIVA through a vein. The second type is inhaled volatile anesthesia, or INVA. Patients breathe INVA in through a breathing tube.

TIVA and INVA are safe and effective but may have different benefits and harms. For example, some patients report feeling refreshed after surgery, while others report feeling groggy or ill. But questions remain about how each type of medicine affects recovery from surgery.

In this study, the research team is looking at how well patients receiving TIVA recover from surgery compared to patients receiving INVA.  

Who can this research help?

Results may help patients and their doctors when considering types of general anesthesia for surgery.

What is the research team doing?

The research team is enrolling 12,500 adults receiving surgery at one of 20 hospitals across the United States. The team is assigning patients by chance to receive either TIVA or INVA.

The day after surgery and again one week and one month later, the research team is surveying patients about:

  • The quality of their recovery
  • Signs or symptoms of waking up during surgery
  • Their ability to do daily activities
  • Social support
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Pain
  • Delirium, or confused thinking and lack of awareness of one’s surroundings
  • Quality of life

Patients who have had surgery are helping to plan and conduct the study.

Research methods at a glance

Design ElementDescription
DesignRandomized controlled trial
Population12,500 adults undergoing scheduled noncardiac surgery expected to last more than 60 minutes and requiring general anesthesia
  • TIVA
  • INVA

Primary: quality of recovery, signs or symptoms of waking up during surgery

Secondary: physical independence, pain, social support, delirium, anxiety, depression, quality of life

Timeframe  Timeframe Length of follow-up for collecting data on primary outcomes. View Glossary 1-month follow-up for primary outcomes

Project Information

Sachin Kheterpal, MD, MBA
Michael Avidan, MBChB
Regents of the University of Michigan
THRIVE: Trajectories of Recovery after Intravenous Propofol vs inhaled VolatilE anesthesia

Key Dates

July 2021
June 2028


Award Type
Health Conditions Health Conditions These are the broad terms we use to categorize our funded research studies; specific diseases or conditions are included within the appropriate larger category. Note: not all of our funded projects focus on a single disease or condition; some touch on multiple diseases or conditions, research methods, or broader health system interventions. Such projects won’t be listed by a primary disease/condition and so won’t appear if you use this filter tool to find them. View Glossary
Populations Populations PCORI is interested in research that seeks to better understand how different clinical and health system options work for different people. These populations are frequently studied in our portfolio or identified as being of interest by our stakeholders. View Glossary
Intervention Strategy Intervention Strategies PCORI funds comparative clinical effectiveness research (CER) studies that compare two or more options or approaches to health care, or that compare different ways of delivering or receiving care. View Glossary
State State The state where the project originates, or where the primary institution or organization is located. View Glossary
Last updated: March 14, 2024