Postsurgical cognitive side effects can have major implications for the level of care, length of hospital stay, and the patient’s perceived quality of care, especially in elderly and fragile patients.
A nationwide survey of Swedish anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists has found there is low awareness of the risks of cognitive side effects following surgery. Furthermore, only around half of the respondents used depth-of-anesthesia monitors. Results are published in Annals of Medicine and Surgery.
“We found that Swedish anesthesia personnel viewed risk assessment, prevention, and handling of postoperative delirium and postoperative cognitive dysfunction of rather low importance. Protocol and/or standardized routines were only rarely implemented,” observes senior investigator Professor Jan G. Jakobsson, MD, PhD, of the Department of Anesthesia & Intensive Care, Institute for Physical Science, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.
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