Intraoperative and Postoperative Complications of Hypothermia

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Reviewing the Literature
Hypothermia is a common problem in surgical patients. Up to 70% of patients experience some degree of hypothermia that is undergoing anesthetic surgery. Complications include but are not limited to wound infections, myocardial ischemia, and greater oxygen demands. The formal definition of hypothermia is when the patient’s core body temperature drops below 36 degrees Celsius or 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. Thus, the purpose of the paper is to synthesize what studies reveal about the current state of knowledge on the effects of pre-operative warming of patient’s postoperative temperatures. I will discuss consistencies and contradictions in the literature, and offer possible explanations for the inconsistencies.
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Ten patients were in a control group where no special precautions were taken, ten patients had preoperative and intraoperative active warming, and ten patients had intraoperative active warming only. By providing 45 minutes to 1 hour of pre-warming and intraoperative warming combined, hypothermia caused by general anesthesia was not experience. After induction the patients with just intraoperative warming were in a hypothermia state for at least the first two hours. It was not until the end of surgery that both groups (except the control group) were at a normothermia state.
Similarly, Hooven (2011) concluded that when using FAW blankets preoperatively, the incidence of postoperative hypothermia was decreased in patients receiving colorectal surgery. The study supported the idea of preoperative warming. This comparison study was a retrospective review of data that was gathered over a period of two years, included 149 patients having colorectal surgeries. 77 patient were pre-warmed and 72 non-warmed. Approximately a 50:50 mix between men and women and ages 24 to 100 years old. It was found that using FAW blankets preoperatively decreased the incidence of postoperative hypothermia in patients receiving colorectal surgery. Melling, Baqar, Eileen & David (2001), knew that warming patients during colorectal surgery had shown to reduce infection rates. In their study, they wanted to
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