Intaoperative awareness

  1. Hello everyone,
    I am a SICU RN currently taking my last class in a BSN completion program.I hope to someday be a CRNA. I am writing a paper on Cyber support available to professsionals and patients regarding anesthesia awareness. I did purchase the book Silelnced Screams.I am wondering if anyone can share any situations they have or have learned from related to anesthesia recall.

    The part of the paper I am having a really hard time with is finding discussion groups for patients that have had anesthesia awareness to share their experiences? The fact that I am having a very difficult time finding discussion groups leads me to believe that the numbers and percentages of anesthesia awareness are grossly overexaggerated.
    How do you go about interviewing patients to see if they have recall? Have you had a patient say they remembered everything, but could not back it up? I thank you and appreciate any help or advice you can provide.
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   NICU_RN_CN
    That book and the women who wrote it has caused a great deal of overexageration regarding recall/awareness. I am a SRNA rght now and we have been lectured on awareness. Many people do not think that the BIS machine works but it is used at our facility to measure depth of anesthesia. From the feedback from CRNA's and what I have seen, the BIS Machine is a good ancillary tool. However certain emergent circumstances i.e., emergency c-section and routine GI procedures have shown a higher rate of recall. Also each patients co-morbidities come into play as well as what the case involves will dictate your anesthetic plan of care.

    You picked a topic that can be difficult to explain in regards to knowledge base. I dont know what background you have in regards to anesthesia and the phases of anesthesia. Let me know if I can help though.

    Keep up the work!
  4. by   shari_rn
    CCRN,
    Thank you for your response. I have no background in anesthesia,but I hope to apply to school next year. I have been working in my current SICU for 8 years.I do not really have knowledge of phases of anesthesia I hope to learn soon.

    For my paper I am supposed to find support/discussion groups for my chosen condition which is patients that have experienced anesthesia awareness. I am supposed to go into these discussion groups and learn of the value of this type of cyber-support for patients without violating confidentiality. My big problem is that I have been unable to find any discussion groups. I have even joined post-traumatic stress sites and posted in them. The fact that I am unable to find these sites is a good thing for patients because it tells me it must be extremely rare. At the same time it is a bad thing for me because I have put so much time into looking for these discussion groups and I have come up with zero. I guess that is what I need to make the point of my paper. The companies that make the monitors want to scare the public into thinking that anesthesia awareness is common and their equiptment will prevent it.

    Thank you for your help
  5. by   subee
    Quote from shari_rn
    CCRN,
    Thank you for your response. I have no background in anesthesia,but I hope to apply to school next year. I have been working in my current SICU for 8 years.I do not really have knowledge of phases of anesthesia I hope to learn soon.

    For my paper I am supposed to find support/discussion groups for my chosen condition which is patients that have experienced anesthesia awareness. I am supposed to go into these discussion groups and learn of the value of this type of cyber-support for patients without violating confidentiality. My big problem is that I have been unable to find any discussion groups. I have even joined post-traumatic stress sites and posted in them. The fact that I am unable to find these sites is a good thing for patients because it tells me it must be extremely rare. At the same time it is a bad thing for me because I have put so much time into looking for these discussion groups and I have come up with zero. I guess that is what I need to make the point of my paper. The companies that make the monitors want to scare the public into thinking that anesthesia awareness is common and their equiptment will prevent it.

    Thank you for your help


    It is rare. You might be better off researching the reliability of BIS monitors because you can use the background info. re: the issue of awareness. I think they're probably expensive crap that department are bullied into buying, but I do use occasionally for patients I believe to be at higher risk for recall. In crash C-sections, I tell patients that they might hear their baby cry after delivery but they won't feel pain so that they know this is not an unusual experience under the crash-section scenario.

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