JCAHO issues sentinel alert over inadequate anesthesia

Anesthesia awareness-the unexpected cognizance that occurs when anesthesia lightens during surgery-is the subject of a recent Sentinel Event Alert issued by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. Forty-eight percent of patients who experience awareness report auditory recollections, 48% report being unable to breathe, and 28% report pain-without being able to communicate this to the surgical team.