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Signa Vitae

Journal of Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine

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Anesthetic management in awake craniotomy

Abstract

Resection of brain tumors may cause neurological sequelae, according to the site and size of the brain tissue removed. Awake craniotomy has been proposed as a surgical approach to satisfy criteria of radical surgery while minimizing eloquent brain damage. The most critical aspect of awake craniotomy is to maintain adequate patient comfort, analgesia, immobility and cooperation during a long surgical operation, ensuring in the meanwhile the safety, control and maintenance of vital functions. Apart from pharmacological, surgical, technical knowledge and skillfulness, the ability to maintain close psycho-emotional
contact and support with the patient throughout the operation is a fundamental task that the anesthesiologist has to pursue for the operation to be successfully managed.
This review summarizes the current opinion on anesthetic management of patients undergoing awake craniotomy.

Key words: anesthesia, awake craniotomy, brain mapping, brain tumor, neuro-oncology

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Low flow, minimal flow and closed circuit system inhalational anesthesia in modern clinical practice

Abstract

Low, minimal flow and closed circuit anesthesia has been pursued since the beginning of the history of anesthesia. For many decades this form of anesthesia has been restricted to devoted enthusiasts and those very fond of gas kinetics. For most clinicians, selecting a fresh flow gas higher than 3-5 L/min was widely accepted as a routine anesthesia technique. The introduction onto the market of new volatile agents as well as advanced anesthesia machines accompanied by highly reliable monitoring systems, made minimal flow or closed system anesthesia feasible on a daily basis. Clinical, cultural, environmental, pharmacological, technological and economic reasons, force the modern anesthesiologist to reconsider the role of minimal flow and closed circuit volatile anesthesia, in clinical practice. This paper analyses the main advantages offered by these anesthesia techniques.

Key words: anesthesia, low flow, minimal flow, closed circuit, body temperature, humidification

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