Do My Coexisting Medical Problems Affect the Risk of Anesthesia

Patients coming to surgery with coexisting medical problems are frequently concerned about how these will influence their risk of anesthesia. Coexisting medical problems may influence risk of anesthesia and surgery, but estimating the risks is a complex issue that depends on many factors, including coexisting medical problems, the contemplated surgery, the anesthesia, and a variety of other variables, many of them unquantifiable (see Chapter 19). Anesthesiologists use a simple scoring system...

Factors That Influence Nausea and Vomiting

Body habitus Obese patients have a higher incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting than their leaner counterparts. It has been hypothesized that this is due to increased amounts of anesthesia drug deposited in the obese patient's increased fat reservoir. This causes prolonged anesthetic release from fat tissues in such patients after surgery. Obese patients are also at higher risk of nausea and vomiting because they have significantly larger resting stomach volumes and are more prone to...

Intermediate Complications Under Anesthesia

There are complications occurring during anesthesia that are more serious than those listed above, but in most cases the effect will be transient and you will still most likely have a complete recovery. Allergic reactions during anesthesia are usually mild and easily managed. These reactions can be seen with the administration of various medications, especially antibiotics, associated with surgery. Allergic reactions in the operating room are increasingly associated with the use of latex...

Treatment of PONV

Even though you might want to prevent or reduce your risk for PONV, prophylactic treatment with the use of potent (and expensive) antinausea drugs on all patients is not justified. About 10-30 percent of all surgical patients will have PONV. If all patients received prophylactic medication for PONV, then seven out of ten patients would receive a drug that was unnecessary. Unfortunately, we cannot determine in advance who will have nausea and vomiting after surgery. If there were absolutely no...

Is it Dangerous to Have Multiple Anesthetics in a Short Period of Time

It is not at all uncommon for adult and pediatric patients to receive multiple anesthetics in a short period of time for diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. For example, it is not uncommon for a woman to undergo several anesthetics in rapid succession associated with the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer. There is the initial anesthetic for a breast biopsy. If the initial breast biopsy is positive for cancer, the second anesthetic might be administered for a lumpectomy with limited...