Elderly Man Suffers Delirium From Anesthesia After Back Surgery

Chicago, Illinois – October 30, 2012- Another case has been reported of an elderly patient suffering from delirium from anesthesia used in a routine surgery – another incident where postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD) could have been avoided if a brain monitor were used.

A 77-year-old man from Illinois, underwent back surgery and was not informed of the prolonged and possibly permanent results of going under an anesthesia without brain activity being monitored.

“In his current state, my father has trouble remembering where he is or who people are, has been talking of events that happened years ago,” says Steve M. the patient’s son near Chicago, IL. “Since the surgery my father is always fidgeting, has trouble sleeping, becomes easily agitated and has hallucinations of objects in his room such as paper on the floor that is not there, a cat ran through his room, people and staff in the hallway he thinks are in the basement at his house. Prior to the surgery he was in fair shape and never had episodes or showed signs of dementia.” (in the interest of patient privacy only the first name of the son is being used)

The family is optimistic that the affects will wear off but feel it is scary to sit by and watch and not be able to do anything especially since it’s been two weeks since the surgery and there are few signs of improvement.

Says Steve M., “It seems that this condition is difficult to test or accurately diagnose. My father did receive a CT scan after consulting the neurologist and psychiatrist, but nothing showed up. We were told that the effects of the anesthesia still need to wear off. I have been trying to find information about what to do if one believes a patient may be suffering from this condition but have not had much luck.”

Noted anesthesiologist Dr. Barry Friedberg has longed warned of the dangers of going under without monitoring brain activity, especially for older patients.

Study findings published in October 2012 (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23027226) confirms provide clear and indisputable evidence that use of a brain monitor while a patient is anesthetized during surgery significantly reduces the risk of POCD.

Dr. Friedberg authored a book on the subject and formed the non-profit Goldilocks Anesthesia Foundation http://www.goldilocksfoundation.com to educate the public about avoiding the hidden dangers from anesthesia over-medication by the use of brain monitors during surgery.

Written for the general public, Getting Over Going Under: 5 Things You MUST Know Before Anesthesia (ISBN 978-0-9829169-0-2, 2010, Goldilocks Press, 116 pages, $18.95) Dr. Friedberg explains that every time a patient has anesthesia for surgery there are dual risks of under-medication (anesthesia awareness) or over-medication (brain scrambled) – preventable risks when using a brain monitor.

“Elderly patients’ brains are more sensitive to anesthesia over medication. More boomers and their parents are aging and having surgery under anesthesia. Substantial financial costs caring for mentally damaged post-op patients could be averted by implementation of routine brain monitoring,” according to Dr. Friedberg.

Two decades ago, Dr. Friedberg, developed a safer anesthesia protocol, subsequently made numerically reproducible with the brain monitor and earning him a U.S. Congressional award. Among the findings in Getting Over Going Under is that about 80 percent of the surgeries in the U.S. put patients at risk of being afflicted with delirium, POCD or even permanent brain damage because a brain monitor is not used.

“The bottom line,” says Friedberg, “Don’t let your parents, your spouse or anybody you love over 50 years old get general anesthesia without a brain monitor or you may NEVER speak to that SAME person again.”

About Barry Friedberg, M.D.

Dr. Barry Friedberg has been interviewed extensively on the subject of anesthesia and propofol by FOX, CNN, True TV, and People Magazine during the Michael Jackson murder trial. A Board Certified Anesthesiologist for more than three decades, Dr. Friedberg developed the Friedberg Method for administering anesthesia in 1992 and the Goldilocks Anesthesia protocol in 1997. He has been published and cited in several medical journals and textbooks and was honored with a U.S. Congressional award for applying his methods on wounded soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq.


Media Contact: For a review copy of Getting Over Going Under, or to schedule an interview with Dr. Barry Friedberg, please contact Scott Lorenz, President of Westwind Communications Book Marketing, 734-667-2090 or scottlorenz@nullwestwindcos.com or http://www.Book-Marketing-Expert.com