Opinion

Anesthesia, Surgery and Neuroinflammation

Krzysztof Laudanski , Roderic G. Eckenhoff
Department of Anesthesiology & Critical Care, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA
J Anesth Perioper Med 2014; 1(2): 118- 121 . Published on Nov 25, 2014 . doi:10.24015/JAPM.2014.0017
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Abstract

Decline in cognitive function after surgery (commonly termed, the postoperative cognitive dysfunction syndromes, or POCDS) is a phenomenon of increasing importance to the current focus on long- term outcomes of healthcare (1, 2).  Concerns over the POCDS have been raised at the extremes of life. For example, children having more than 3 surgeries before the age of 3 may be at risk of both behavioral and intellectual compromise later in life (3, 4). Furthermore, in the elderly, anesthesia and surgery have been suggested to contribute to the development of delirium and Alzheimer disease (AD), and yet, if true, it is unclear whether anesthesia, or surgical stress itself is the trigger (5, 6). But to put this into perspective, the occurrence of POCDS at the extremes of age may be related to particular vulnerabilities associated with development and/or aging. The immune system contributes substantially to these vulnerabilities, especially in the aging brain. Here, we will briefly review how and why the immune responses of the central nervous system (CNS) can conspire with anesthesia and surgery to produce durable dysfunction.

 

 

Citation: Krzysztof Laudanski, Roderic G. Eckenhoff. Anesthesia-induced neuroinflammation. J Anesth Perioper Med 2014; 1: 118-21. doi: 10.24015/JAPM.2014.0017

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