40,000 Patients Wake Up During Surgery Every Year in the U.S.


KANSAS CITY, MO - Suddenly in the middle of his broken arm surgery, Bobby Greenfield, only 14 years old, was wide awake. He could see everything, but not talk.  His pain was unbearable, but he wasn't able to move or alert the operating staff.  The paralyzing influence of the anesthesia had made it impossible for him to ask for help from the doctors that were operating on him just inches away.

Fischer's story is among a growing number of stories from the 40,000 patients that achieve "interoperative awareness" during surgery every year. Legal issues and public awareness of intraoperative awareness, a state that occurs if the anesthetics don't fully take effect, is driving more anesthesiologists to use new devises, called level of conscious (LOC) monitors.

These monitors are able to measure patient's depth of anesthesia, and gauge the depth of anesthesia, and ensure that the patient doesn't gain awareness while undergoing a surgical procedure.

In the U.S. anesthesia devices market, expected to hit $860 million by 2011, the LOC monitors are one of the fastest growing.  An analysis conducted by the Millennium Research Group (MRG) reveals that LOC monitors are rapidly being adopted by anesthesiologists as there has been growing awareness among anesthesiologists and patients of the risks of anesthesia awareness during surgery.

An anesthesiologist who wish to remain anonymous, told us that "apart from being extremely painful, anesthesia awareness can also be psychologically distressing and lead to long term psychological complications.  We think the LOC gives us a way to prevent this nightmare."


Articles in this issue:


  • Masthead

    Editor-in Chief:
    Kirsten Nicole

    Editorial Staff:
    Kirsten Nicole
    Stan Kenyon
    Robyn Bowman
    Kimberly McNabb
    Lisa Gordon
    Stephanie Robinson

    Kirsten Nicole
    Stan Kenyon
    Liz Di Bernardo
    Cris Lobato
    Elisa Howard
    Susan Cramer

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