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How are patients kept unaware of what is happening during surgery?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

In order to keep patients pain-free, and unaware of what is happening throughout the procedure, anesthesiologists use a combination of intravenous drugs and inhaled gases to block muscle activity, pain signals and memory of the event. The exact cocktail depends on how long the patient needs to be asleep, the type of procedure being performed and the overall condition of the patient including their physical attributes and health.

After general anesthesia is administered, electronic devices continually monitor and regulate breathing, oxygen, carbon dioxide, heart rate, body temperature and blood pressure. All the while, the anesthesiologist can make adjustments as needed.

 

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