Surgical Tip of the Week
#23 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 loss of consciousness during which patients are not arousable, even by painful stimulation.
- The ability to independently maintain ventilatory function is often impaired.
- Patients often require assistance in maintaining a patent airway.
- Positive pressure ventilation may be required because of depressed spontaneous ventilation or drug-induced depression of neuromuscular function.
- Cardiovascular function may be impaired.