Awareness, muscle relaxants
and balanced anaesthesia

by
Mainzer J Jr.
Can Anaesth Soc J. 1979 Sep;26(5):386-93.


ABSTRACT

The incidence of awareness during insufficient anaesthesia is reported to be one per cent. It is usually due to the use of muscle relaxants, a balanced technique and the lightest possible depth of anaesthesia. Increased incidences were noted in open-heart surgery, during intubation-endoscopy procedures and in caesarean delivery patients. Experiences of awareness are disturbing to patients, who are usually benefited by a sympathetic and forthright explanation of the event. Fourteen representative cases of the problem are reported. Since no adequate sign or test exists for detection of awareness during very light anaesthesia or with associated paralysis, more meticulous attention is required in using relaxants or the balanced technique. Greater anaesthetic supplementation and reduction in the use of relaxants are recommended to halt the recurrence of this most serious anaesthetic problem.
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Refs
and further reading

general-anaesthesia.com
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