Conference Proceedings

Peri-operative hypothermia in the high-risk surgical patient

K Leslie, DI Sessler

Bailliere's Best Practice in Clinical Anaesthesiology | Published : 1999


Peri-operative hypothermia is common in high-risk surgical patients. Anaesthesia impairs central thermoregulation, allowing redistribution of body heat. Cool ambient temperatures and high-volume fluid administration accelerate loss of heat to the environment. Randomized, controlled trials have proven that mild hypothermia increases the incidence of wound infection and prolongs hospitalization, increases the incidence of morbid cardiac events and ventricular tachycardia and impairs coagulation. Other complications include enhanced anaesthetic drug effects, prolonged recovery room stays, shivering and impaired immune function. There is compelling animal evidence for cerebral protection by mild..

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University of Melbourne Researchers