Anesthesia Awareness: When the Mind Is Not Suppressed

  • George A. Mashour
Part of the Contemporary Clinical Neuroscience book series (CCNE)


In approximately 1–2 general anesthetics/1000, adequate hypnosis and amnesia are not achieved, leading to intraoperative awareness and subsequent explicit recall. “Anesthesia awareness,” as it is sometimes called, is one of the most feared complications of surgery by both patients and physicians alike. A significant proportion of these patients develops long-term psychological sequelae, including posttraumatic stress disorder. In this chapter I discuss the incidence, risk factors, prevention, and postoperative consequences of anesthesia awareness.


Awareness during general anesthesia, awareness with explicit recall, intraoperative awareness, anesthesia awareness, anesthetic depth, depth of anesthesia monitor 



The author has no conflicts of interest to declare. Funding for the author’s research on awareness comes from the Foundation for Anesthesia Education & Research and the American Society of Anesthesiologists.


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Copyright information

© Humana Press, a part of Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departments of Anesthesiology and NeurosurgeryUniversity of Michigan Medical SchoolAnn ArborUSA

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