A recent study appearing in this month’s issue of Gastroenterology concluded that the risks of complications following a colonoscopy might increase when patients receive anesthesia – however the study lacks complete transparency. The results of this study have led others to claim that anesthesia causes direct complications during or after colonoscopies, but it has been proven that in this case, there is only a slight correlation. The study does not reflect the true advantages and services that anesthesia provides for patients undergoing various medical procedures.
A group of researchers from the Group Health Research Institute in Seattle conducted this study by analyzing data from 3,168,228 colonoscopy procedures in adults aged 40 to 64 in the Truven Health MarketScan Research Databases from 2008 to 2011. Although the researchers found a correlation between use of anesthesia services and risk of complications, the significance of this correlation was small and did not account for the vast benefits of anesthesia.
Many healthcare professionals are re-analyzing this study and digging deeper into the statistical significance of its findings. Dr. Norman A. Cohen, Clinical Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine at Oregon Health and Science University, commented that “accounting for health status, the increased risk attributable to anesthesia alone is thus 1.5 percent. This is certainly clinically insignificant.” Dr. Cohen performed extensive calculations that proved that anesthesia alone doesn’t account for more than a minimal share of the risk associated with post-colonoscopy complications.
Although the study conducted by the Group Health Research Institute does contain legitimacy and credibility, it does not take into account the great advantages of anesthesia. As with every surgical procedure, anesthesia can lead to possible complications and have post-surgery effects on patients. However, the benefits of anesthesia are so incredibly extensive and anesthesia has helped patients experience comfort and pain relief during medical procedures. Pain management is a vital aspect of healthcare that cannot be understated or ignored, and anesthesiologists are central in providing this unique service.
Somnia Anesthesia greatly values patient satisfaction and gives patients access to compassionate clinical care. We support the deep analysis of studies and the vast benefits of anesthesia during specific medical procedures. If your facility is in need of anesthesia guidance, please call us to schedule a free consultation or click here.
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