You are visiting a website that is not intended for your region

The page or information you have requested is intended for an audience outside the United States. By continuing to browse you confirm that you are a non-US resident requesting access to this page or information.

Switch to the US site

Select Your Country or Region
Patient safety

Keep patients safe during anesthesia


Avoiding atelectasis to reduce postoperative complications

Keeping patients’ lungs healthy

Restoring and preserving your patients’ health are the main goals of healthcare. This includes trying to avoid potential postoperative complications related to anesthesia, such as atelectasis.

Atelectasis affects over 90% [1] of patients undergoing surgery, regardless of gender, age, health condition or length of surgery, showing the importance of protecting patients’ lungs.

Read the article 

Why are lung recruitment maneuvers important?

Lung recruitment can greatly mitigate atelectasis, helping to prevent postoperative complications, such as hypoxemia, pneumonia, local inflammatory response and ventilator induced lung injury. [2]

“Nowadays, data tell us that we should recruit all the patients,” says Dr. Carlos Ferrando. He continues, “you should make the stepwise increase in PEEP recruitment maneuver. It's safer.”

Lung recruitment maneuvers during anesthesia make a difference – for you and for your patients

Some clinicians say they find lung recruitment complicated and time consuming – but it doesn´t have to be.

Why do hypoxic gas mixtures develop?

Watch our animation

Studies show that common hypoxic guard systems may fail to maintain the inspired O2 concentration (FIO2) during low-flow anesthesia.[4] These traditional guard systems have been designed to trigger on hypoxic mixtures in the delivered fresh gas flow, not in the inspired gas. 

If the anesthesiologist does not take action, or if your anesthesia machine does not actively override the settings, there is a great risk that the FIO2 level becomes lower than the delivered O2 concentration, jeopardizing patient safety. [5] The video illustrates what happens.

Preventing hypoxic mixtures

Did you know that conventional anesthesia machines do not always prevent hypoxic gas mixtures?

Traditional hypoxic guards use algorithms to prevent FIO2 from becoming dangerously low (<21%) in the fresh gas flow.

One study found that approximately 93% of all patients fell below an acceptable FIO2 level on conventional anesthesia machines, even with hypoxic guards.[3]

Read article here 

How to avoid hypoxic mixtures during low-flow anesthesia

An active hypoxic guard system intervenes if the clinician has not taken action before the O2 level in the inspired gas drops below 21%. The active hypoxic guard will then override the clinician’s settings, preventing further delivery of hypoxic mixtures.

Learn more about our active inspired hypoxic guard system O₂Guard 

Related articles

  • Operating Room

How connected medical devices raised uptime in the OR

For Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children in Northern Ireland, connected medical devices are an indispensable tool for improving operation planning.

Les mer

  • Operating Room

Basics of surgical lighting

The right surgical lighting is critical for patient safety and staff comfort. It should be designed to enable the medical team to focus exclusively on the surgical operation.

Les mer

  • Operating Room

Ventilation performance

If all perioperative organ injuries were grouped, they would be the third leading cause of death in the USA. Prevention of organ injury, such as lung damage, could reduce the need for postoperative escalation of care. Learn more about how lung protective ventilation can participate to reduce health-related complications and costs.

Les mer

  • Operating Room

Patient Positioning in the OR

Proper patient positioning is an important prerequisite for a successful surgical procedure. Optimum positioning not only ensures the best possible access to the surgical site, but prevents the long-term consequences of nerve damage or pressure ulcers.

Les mer

  • Operating Room

Heart lung interaction

Anesthesia-induced lung collapse is a well-known entity which can be avoided by a good ventilatory strategy.

Les mer

  • Operating Room

Why low-flow anesthesia?

Low-flow anesthesia offers pulmonary, economic and environmental benefits.

Les mer

Alle referanser

  1. Hedenstierna G, Edmark L. Mechanisms of atelectatsis in the perioperative period. Best Practice & Research Clinical Anaesthesiology 24 (2010) 157-169

  2. Tusman G, Bëhm SH, Warner DO, Sprung J. Atelectasis and perioperative pulmonary complications in high-risk patients. Curr Opin Anaesthesiol. 2012 Feb:25(1):1-10.

  3. Garcia-Fernândez J, Romero A, Blanco A, etal. Recruitment manoeuvres in anaesthesia: How many more excuses are there not to use them? Rev Esp Anestesiol Reanim. 2018 pr:65(4):209-217

  4. De Cooman S, Schollaert C, Hendrickx JF, et al. Hypoxic guard systems do not prevent rapid hypoxic inspired mixture format ion. J Clin Monit Comput 2014, 10.1007/s10877-014-9626-y.

  5. Ghijselings IE, De Cooman S, Carelle R, et al. Performance of an active inspired hypoxic guard. J Clin Monit Comput. 2016 Feb;30(1):63-8t.