anesthesia must be carefully watched, because the
medicines used for anesthesia affect the
central nervous system, cardiovascular system, and
respiratory system (airway and lungs). Anesthesia suppresses many of the body's
normal automatic functions. So it may significantly affect your breathing,
heartbeat, blood pressure, and other body functions.
Instruments commonly used for monitoring during anesthesia
blood pressure cuff. This is usually strapped around your upper
pulse oximeter, a small instrument that is attached to
your finger, toe, or earlobe to measure the level of oxygen in your
electrocardiogram (EKG, ECG) to monitor your heart
activity. Small wires (leads) are placed on the skin of your
chest and held in place by small adhesive patches.
probe. A monitor connected to your skin by a lead held in place by a small
round adhesive patch may be used to measure skin temperature. A thermometer
that is attached to a small tube inserted through the mouth into the
esophagus after you are unconscious may be used to measure
internal body temperature.
An oxygen analyzer and carbon dioxide
analyzer on the anesthesia machine. These instruments measure the amount of
oxygen and carbon dioxide gases inhaled and exhaled in your breath.
Other monitoring instruments may also be used, depending on your
condition, the type of surgical procedure you are having, and the type of
anesthesia used. These may be invasive monitors that need to be placed inside
the body, including:
urinary catheter. This is a small, flexible tube inserted into
the bladder to collect urine.
Catheters that are inserted into
certain arteries or veins. These can accurately measure blood pressure or measure
heart or lung function. These larger catheters also are sometimes needed to
deliver medicines or blood transfusions.
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