Complications of inhaled anesthesia delivery systems

Russell C. Brockwell, J. Jeff Andrews

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Inhaled anesthesia delivery systems (ADS) have evolved in the past 20 years from simple pneumatic machines to complex computer-controlled devices. For the purposes of this discussion, we will outline some of the potential complications that may result from the use of these systems. Because of the complexity of modern ADS, it is incumbent on the anesthesiologist to be cognizant of potential problems that may arise with their use. Even though it is now more difficult than ever for the practitioner to develop a comprehensive understanding of these machines, it remains essential for the safe practice of anesthesia. When the anesthesiologist understands the basic design differences between products from different manufacturers, it is more likely that the appropriate preoperative checks will be performed and that delivery of a safe anesthetic can be ensured. Although malpractice claims associated with anesthesia delivery systems are rare, when they do occur they may be severe, and they continue to occur. These complications may range in severity from mild hypercapnia to awareness and even death.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-316
Number of pages16
JournalAnesthesiology Clinics of North America
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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