One of the biggest concerns for patients undergoing surgery under general anesthesia is waking up or feeling pain during the operation. In one recent study, scientists sought to better understand how anesthesia works.
A study to better understand how anesthesia works
Scientists say that the operation of general anesthesia still has some mystery to man. However, this new study demonstrates that connected consciousness, reacting to one’s environment under general anesthesia, is a common phenomenon during surgery.
The effects of general anesthesia on patients are different depending on their gender and age. Because young adults are more likely to experience connected consciousness, the researchers chose to observe 338 young adults between the ages of 18 and 40 for their research.
Several patients respond to commands under anesthesia
The researchers asked patients to shake hands once if they understood what they were being told, and twice if they were suffering, after tracheal intubation. Result: 11% of young adults, one in ten young adults, under general anesthesia experienced connected consciousness.
The study also shows that this phenomenon affects more women than men. Indeed, 13% of women under anesthesia responded to orders, compared to only 6% of men. In addition, it shows that patients are less likely to experience connected consciousness when a continuous level of anesthetic is maintained after intubation.
Finally, the study authors note that patients do not have to be afraid before their surgery, as very few people remember this experience when they wake up.