Anaesthesia, general

Loss of sensation and consciousness induced to prevent the perception of pain throughout the body during surgery. General anaesthesia is usually induced by intravenous injection of a barbiturate drug and maintained by inhalation of anaesthetic gases such as halothane, which may be introduced into the lungs via an endotracheal tube. During the anaesthetic, the pulse, blood pressure, and other vital signs are continuously monitored. General anaesthetics have become much safer, and serious complications are rare. However, severe pre-existing diseases such as lung or heart disorders increase the risks. Minor after effects such as nausea and vomiting are usually controlled effectively with antiemetic drugs.


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