Using critical care physicians to deliver anesthesia and boost surgical caseload in austere environments: the Critical Care General Anesthesia Syllabus (CC GAS)

Despite an often severe lack of surgeons and surgical equipment, the rate-limiting step in surgical care for the nearly five billion people living in resource-limited areas is frequently the absence of safe anesthesia. During disaster relief and surgical missions, critical care physicians (CCPs), who are already competent in complex airway and ventilator management, can help address the need for skilled anesthetists in these settings.

We provided a descriptive analysis that CCPs were trained to provide safe general anesthesia, monitored anesthesia care (MAC), and spinal anesthesia using a specifically designed and simple syllabus.

Six CCPs provided anesthesia under the supervision of a board-certified anesthesiologist for 58 (32%) cases of a total of 183 surgical cases performed by a surgical mission team at St. Luc Hospital in Port-au-Prince, Haiti in 2013, 2017, and 2018. There were no reported complications.

Given CCPs’ competencies in complex airway and ventilator management, a CCP, with minimal training from a simple syllabus, may be able to act as an anesthesiologist-extender and safely administer anesthesia in the austere environment, increasing the number of surgical cases that can be performed. Further studies are necessary to confirm our observation.

Outcomes Associated With Anaesthetic Techniques for Caesarean Section in Low- And Middle-Income Countries: A Secondary Analysis of WHO Surveys

Associations between anaesthetic techniques and pregnancy outcomes were assessed among 129,742 pregnancies delivered by caesarean section (CS) in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) using two WHO databases. Anaesthesia was categorized as general anaesthesia (GA) and neuraxial anaesthesia (NA). Outcomes included maternal death (MD), maternal near miss (MNM), severe maternal outcome (SMO), intensive care unit (ICU) admission, early neonatal death (END), neonatal near miss (NNM), severe neonatal outcome (SNO), Apgar score <7 at 5 minutes, and neonatal ICU (NICU) admission. A two-stage approach of individual participant data meta-analysis was used to combine the results. Adjusted odds ratio (OR) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were presented. Compared to GA, NA were associated with decreased odds of MD (pooled OR 0.28; 95% CI 0.10, 0.78), MNM (pooled OR 0.25; 95% CI 0.21, 0.31), SMO (pooled OR 0.24; 95% CI 0.20,0.28), ICU admission (pooled OR 0.17; 95% CI 0.13, 0.22), NNM (pooled OR 0.63; 95% CI 0.55, 0.73), SNO (pooled OR 0.55; 95% CI 0.48, 0.63), Apgar score <7 at 5 minutes (pooled OR 0.35; 95% CI 0.29, 0.43), and NICU admission (pooled OR 0.53; 95% CI 0.45, 0.62). NA therefore was associated with decreased odds of adverse pregnancy outcomes in LMICs.

Perianesthetic Concerns for the non-COVID-19 Patients Requiring Surgery During the COVID-19 Pandemic Outbreak: An Observational Study

The global health crisis caused by the COVID-19 virus, has being marked by a rapid spread, numerous severe respiratory cases and an elevated mortality rate [1]. It has forced World Health Organization to declare global emergency and governments to apply confinement measures and stop the scheduled medical activities [2]. Recommendations have been developed for the management of patients with COVID-19 requiring endotracheal intubation and critical cares [3]. In addition of surgical emergencies and cesarean sections, certain surgical or diagnostic procedures cannot be postponed due to the risk of unacceptable morbidity. Therefore, Health Ministries have authorized the performance of these procedures in accordance with specific rules. Data on this type of perioperative management for COVID-19 negative patients are rare.

Improving Quality of Surgical and Anaesthesia Care at Hospital Level in sub-Saharan Africa: A Systematic Review Protocol of Health System Strengthening Interventions

Introduction: Over 5 billion people in the world do not have access to safe, affordable surgical and anaesthesia care when needed. In order to improve health outcomes in patients with surgical conditions, both access to care and the quality of care need to be improved. A recent commission on high-quality health systems highlighted that poor-quality care is now a bigger barrier than non-utilisation of the health system for reducing mortality.

Aim: To carry out a systematic review to provide an evidence-based summary of hospital-based interventions associated with improved quality of surgical and anaesthesia care in sub-Saharan African countries (SSACs).

Methods and analysis: Three search strings (1) surgery and anaesthesia, (2) quality improvement hospital-based interventions and (3) SSACs will be combined. The following databases EMBASE, Global Health, MEDLINE, CINAHL, Web of Science and Scopus will be searched. Further relevant studies will be identified from national and international health organisations and publications and reference lists of all selected full-text articles. The review will include all type of original articles in English published between 2008 and 2019. Article screening, data extraction and assessment of methodological quality will be done by two reviewers independently and any disputes will be resolved by a third reviewer or team consensus. Three types of outcomes will be collected including clinical, process and implementation outcomes. The primary outcome will be mortality. Secondary outcomes will include other clinical outcomes (major and minor complications), as well as process and implementation outcomes. Descriptive statistics and outcomes will be summarised and discussed. For the primary outcome, the methodological rigour will be assessed.

Ethics and dissemination: The results will be published in a peer reviewed open access journal and presented at national and international conferences. As this is a review of secondary data no formal ethical approval is required.

Availability of COVID-19 Information From National and International Aesthetic Surgery Society Websites

Background: National and international aesthetic surgery society websites are an important source of information for patients and aesthetic surgeons. The current COVID-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented global health crisis. The aim of this study was to assess the information available on national and international aesthetic surgery society websites on the current pandemic of COVID-19.

Methods: National and international aesthetic surgery society websites were assessed with regard to COVID-19 information.

Results: Thirty-one per cent of nations had aesthetic surgery society websites. Twenty-two per cent of national society websites had a specific COVID-19 section. Seventeen per cent of these websites had COVID-19-specific guidelines available; of these websites with guidelines, 77% had a specific COVID-19 section advising to provide only urgent or emergent care and 46% provided their sovereign state’s directives to provide only urgent or emergent care. Two international aesthetic surgery society websites had COVID-19-specific guidelines, and one of the two had significant educational resources.

Conclusion: The availability of COVID-19 clinical guidelines and patient information sheets on national plastic surgery society websites is sparse. In contrast, one international society website carefully analysed national and international recommendations and guidelines and made general recommendations for its members with regularly updated resources. This study suggests that improvement and increase in COVID-19 information provided by many national aesthetic surgery society websites may be improved by links to the ISAPS website.

Level of evidence iv: This journal requires that authors assign a level of evidence to each article. For a full description of these Evidence-Based Medicine ratings, please refer to the Table of Contents or the online Instructions to Authors

Cardioprotective Effects of Propofol-Dexmedetomidine in Open-Heart Surgery: A Prospective Double-Blind Study

Myocardial protection in cardiac surgeries is a must and requires multimodal approaches in perioperative period to decrease and prevent the increase of myocardial oxygen demand and consumption that lead to postoperative cardiac complications including myocardial ischemia, dysfunction, and heart failure.
Study design
Prospective, controlled, randomized, double-blinded study.
This study aims to study the effect of propofol-dexmedetomidine continuous infusion cardioprotection during open-heart surgery in adult patients.
Materials and methods
Sixty adult patients of both sexes aged from 30 to 60 years old belonging to the American Society of Anesthesiologists III or IV undergoing open-heart surgery were randomly divided into two equal groups: Group P (control group) received continuous infusion of propofol at a rate of 2 mg/kg/h and 50 cc 0.9% sodium chloride solution infused at a rate of 0.4 μg/kg/h (used as a placebo) and Group PD received continuous infusion of propofol at a rate of 2 mg/kg/h and dexmedetomidine 200 μg diluted in 50 cc 0.9% sodium chloride solution infused at a rate of 0.4 μg/kg/h. Infusion for all patients started immediately preoperative till skin closure. Hemodynamic measurements of heart rate (HR), invasive mean arterial pressure, and oxygen saturation were recorded at baseline before induction of anesthesia, immediately after intubation, at skin incision, at sternotomy and every 15 min in the 1st h then every 30 min during the prebypass period then every 15 min in the 1st h then every 30 min after weaning from CPB till the end of the surgery. Serum biomarkers; cardiac troponin (cTnI) and creatine kinase-myocardial bound (CK-MB) samples were measured basally (T1), 15 min after unclamping of the aorta (T2), immediate postoperative (T3), and 24 h postoperative (T4). Intraoperative data were also recorded including the number of coronary grafts, aortic cross-clamping duration, duration of cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB), duration of surgery, and rhythm of reperfusion. Fentanyl requirement, extubation time, and length of intensive care unit (ICU) stay were also recorded for every case.
There was no statistically significant differences as regard to demographic data between the studied two groups. HR and blood pressure recorded was lower in the PD group than the control group, and this difference was noted to be statistically significant. Furthermore, the PD group showed lower levels of myocardial enzymes (cTnI and CK-MB), decreased total fentanyl requirement, earlier postoperative extubation, and shorter ICU stay than the P(control) group.
The use of propofol-dexmedetomidine in CPB surgeries offers more cardioprotective effects than the use of propofol alone.

Postoperative analgesic effect of intrathecal dexmedetomidine on bupivacaine subarachnoid block for open reduction and internal fixation of femoral fractures

One of the drawbacks of subarachnoid block is the short duration of analgesia particularly when adjuvants are not added to local anesthetics agent used. However, dexmedetomidine an α2-adrenergic agent has been found to possess analgesic effect.
This study seeks to determine the analgesic efficacy of intrathecal 7.5 μg of dexmedetomidine and its side effects when used for open reduction and internal fixation (ORIF) of femoral fractures.
It is a prospective randomized, double-blinded study that was carried out in a Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi in Nigeria. Seventy American Society of Anesthesiologists I or II patients were randomized into two groups of 35 each to receive 3 ml of 0.5% hyperbaric bupivacaine combined with either 7.5 μg of dexmedetomidine in 0.3 ml of normal saline (Group D) or 0.3 ml of normal saline alone (Group S). Patient’s outcome measures noted (time to first request of analgesia, proportion of patients with pain score <4 postoperatively using numerical rating scale [NRS], and total analgesic consumed in 24 h.).
The patients in Group D had a longer time to first request of analgesia, larger proportion of patients with pain score 0.05). However, the patient satisfaction was better in Group D.
The addition of 7.5 μg of dexmedetomidine to bupivacaine for subarachnoid block in the management of femoral fractures using ORIF provided better anesthetic profile, particularly prolonged duration of postoperative analgesia without significant side effects.

Effect of Dexmedetomidine Combined with Inhalation of Isoflurane on Oxygenation Following One-Lung Ventilation in Thoracic Surgery

Background: One-lung ventilation (OLV) is commonly used during thoracic surgery. At this time, hypoxemia is considered one of the remarkable consequences of the anesthesia management. Hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction (HPV) is the defense mechanism against hypoxia.
Objectives: The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of infusion of dexmedetomidine on improving the oxygenation during OLV among the adult patients undergoing thoracic surgery.
Methods: A total of 42 patients undergoing OLV by general anesthesia with isoflurane inhalation were randomly assigned into two groups: IV infusion of dexmedetomidine at 0.3 microgram/kg/h (DISO) and IV infusion of normal saline (NISO). Three Arterial Blood Gas (ABG) samples were obtained throughout the surgery. Hemodynamic parameters, PaO2, PaCO2, and complications at recovery phase were recorded. The collected information was analyzed using SPSS software version 22.
Results: In the dexmedetomidine group, the mean hemodynamic parameters had a significant reduction at 30 and 60 minutes following OLV. Administration of dexmedetomidine resulted in a significant increase in the PaCO2 and a reduction in the PaO2 when changing from two-lung ventilation to OLV, where PaO2 reached its maximum value within 10 minutes after OLV in the DISO group, and it began to gradually increase to the end of operation. The duration of the recovery phase, also complications at the recovery phase decreased significantly in DISO group.
Conclusions: The results of the study showed that, dexmedetomidine may improve arterial oxygenation during OLV in adult patients undergoing thoracic surgery, and can be a suitable anesthetic agent for thoracic surgery.

Incidence and factors associated with postoperative nausea and vomiting among elective adult surgical patients at University of Gondar comprehensive specialized hospital, Northwest Ethiopia, 2019: A cross-sectional study

Postoperative nausea and vomiting is a common complication of anaesthesia and surgery. It is considered the most common cause of morbidity following anaesthesia and has significant effects on patient satisfaction and cost. Despite modern anaesthetic and surgical techniques, the incidence of PONV remains high.

The objective of this study was to determine the incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting and associated factors.

A cross-sectional study was conducted from January 1 to May 30, 2019. A total of 355 adult elective patients who were operated on this period were included in the study.

The incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting was 17.2% within 24 h after operation. Factors that were associated with postoperative nausea and vomiting were history of motion sickness (AOR = 6.0, CI = 2.51–14.49), previous history of postoperative nausea and vomiting (AOR = 13.55, CI = 6.37–28.81) and long duration of surgery (AOR = 10.1, CI = 3.97–25.92).

and recommendations: The incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting was still high compared with most studies conducted in the world. However, when it compared to the previous study done in the study area, it showed significant reduction in the incidence of PONV by 19%.We suggest that the use of anti-emetic prophylaxis and the introduction of postoperative nausea and vomiting treatment protocols

Variation in global uptake of the Surgical Safety Checklist

Background: The Surgical Safety Checklist (SSC) is a patient safety tool shown to reduce mortality and to improve teamwork and adherence with perioperative safety practices. The results of the original pilot work were published 10 years ago. This study aimed to determine the contemporary prevalence and predictors of SSC use globally.

Methods: Pooled data from the GlobalSurg and Surgical Outcomes studies were analysed to describe SSC use in 2014–2016. The primary exposure was the Human Development Index (HDI) of the reporting country, and the primary outcome was reported SSC use. A generalized estimating equation, clustering by facility, was used to determine differences in SSC use by patient, facility and national characteristics.

Results: A total of 85 957 patients from 1464 facilities in 94 countries were included. On average, facilities used the SSC in 75⋅4 per cent of operations. Compared with very high HDI, SSC use was less in low HDI countries (odds ratio (OR) 0⋅08, 95 per cent c.i. 0⋅05 to 0⋅12). The SSC was used less in urgent compared with elective operations in low HDI countries (OR 0⋅68, 0⋅53 to 0⋅86), but used equally for urgent and elective operations in very high HDI countries (OR 0⋅96, 0⋅87 to 1⋅06). SSC use was lower for obstetrics and gynaecology versus abdominal surgery (OR 0⋅91, 0⋅85 to 0⋅98) and where the common or official language was not one of the WHO official languages (OR 0⋅30, 0⋅23 to 0⋅39).

Conclusion: Worldwide, SSC use is generally high, but significant variability exists. Implementation and dissemination strategies must be developed to address this variability.