Surgical Tip of the Week
#22 The Sedation Continuum
The concept of sedation as a continuum is the foundation of patient safety. Sedation is a continuum of levels of sedation from fully consciousness to unconsciousness (general anesthesia).
- A drug-induced depression of consciousness during which patients cannot be easily aroused, but
- respond purposefully following repeated or painful stimulation.
- reflex withdrawal from a painful stimulus is NOT considered a purposeful response
- The ability to independently maintain ventilatory function may be impaired.
- Patients may require assistance in maintaining a patent airway.
- Spontaneous ventilation may be inadequate.
- Cardiovascular function is usually maintained.