When you think about the risks of surgery, you may worry about something going wrong during the operation or that the procedure will put so much stress on the body that you will be unable to recover. While something could go wrong and the stress of the procedure may increase the risks, the surgeon and staff are prepared for any issues that may occur. They also take measures to reduce risks, including helping the body regulate the core temperature during the procedure. If you have been affected, you should contact an attorney immediately about filing a Stockert 3T Heater Cooler lawsuit.
You see, anesthesia prevents the brain from interpreting pain signals sent by the nerves surrounding the surgical site. But it also affects the brains’ ability to control certain functions including breathing, which is why a mechanical breathing device is often used to assist patients undergoing deep anesthesia.
The parts of the brain that regulate temperature are also affected by anesthesia. In fact, their body temperature can drop so much they become hypothermic. Cold operating rooms, room temperature intravenous blood transfusions and fluids, and open body cavities can all cause hypothermia. The problem is that hypothermia causes blood vessels to constrict and can cause an increase in blood pressure. These things put a great deal of stress on the heart and can cause serious cardiac problems.
Researchers though have proven that maintaining the patients’ normal body temperature can have a positive effect, including by reducing infections, reducing healing time, and decrease the amount of time the patient stays in the hospital. It also reduces the risk of heart injury.
In fact, researchers studied 300 patients who had chest, abdominal, and vascular surgery. The body temperatures of 142 of these patients were kept near normal while 158 were not. The results were shocking: 1.4 percent of the warmed patients suffered unstable angina, cardiac arrest, or heart attack, while 6.3 percent of the non-warmed patients suffered these serious injuries, suggesting a 55 percent risk reduction in cardiac complications when patients were kept at normal temperatures.
The patients who were warmed during and after the surgical procedures received either warmed intravenous fluids and were covered with surgical warming blankets connected to heater cooler devices. The addition of these blankets has improved how normal body temperatures are maintained, as usually a patient is covered with only paper drapes during the procedure and cotton blankets after the procedure.
Be aware though that heater cooler devices have been linked to serious bacterial infections in patients who undergo open-chest procedures and abdominal procedures. Though the blankets transport the air warmed by the heater cooler device over the patient, it is believed to be steam vented from the machine that carries the bacteria and poses a risk to patients.
Still, study authors say that about 25 million people have heart disease risk factors and maintaining their normal body temperature during surgery decrease the chance that they will suffer a cardiac injury during a procedure. Warming patients also reduced the abnormally fast heartbeat that is often seen during surgery. Researchers found that about 2 percent of warmed patients experienced ventricular tachycardia while 8 percent of non-warmed patients did. Irregular heart beat was also seen more after surgery in patients who were not warmed.