Accidental awareness in women having pregnancy-related surgery under general anaesthesia is more frequent than expected

Accidental awareness occurs when a patient is temporarily conscious during a general anaesthetic and can remember things that happened during surgery, perhaps feeling pain or being unable to move. More commonly however, awareness occurs during the transition at the very start or end of a general anaesthetic (i.e. before and after surgery), as the patient is going to sleep or waking up. Although accidental awareness during general anaesthesia is rare, and the experiences usually only lasted for a few seconds or minutes, the complication remains an important concern for both patients and anaesthetists.

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