Anesthetic Neurotoxicity in Children

This article discusses the issues raised by many studies of potential neurotoxicity of anesthetics in infants, toddlers and children.

It attempts to address varying results of different studies, and to synthesize animal evidence with pediatric studies, different times of exposure and number of anesthetics.

The authors note that test batteries may not have sufficient ability to detect subtle changes in IQ, behavioural issues and academic performance, and argue for a redirecting of testing to identify potentially subtle effects that could be related to anesthesia.

There are still no studies that show overwhelmingly that anesthesia causes harm in pediatric anesthesia and at this time no practice change is felt to be warranted for performing necessary surgeries in children


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