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    What contribution does anesthesia make to climate change?

       

    Daniel Jolley.

    7 articles.

    Created July 17, 2019, last updated 11 months ago.


    Collection: 100, Score: 227, Trend score: 0, Read count: 224, Articles count: 7, Created: 2019-07-17 23:56:56 UTC. Updated: 2019-07-18 00:16:36 UTC.

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    Also see Carbon Footprint from Anaesthetic gas use [pdf] from the UK’s Sustainable Development Unit.

    Daniel Jolley  Daniel Jolley
     
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    Collected Articles

    • Br J Anaesth · Dec 2010

      Inhalation anaesthetics and climate change.

      Although the increasing abundance of CO(2) in our atmosphere is the main driver of the observed climate change, it is the cumulative effect of all forcing agents that dictate the direction and magnitude of the change, and many smaller contributors are also at play. Isoflurane, desflurane, and sevoflurane are widely used inhalation anaesthetics. Emissions of these compounds contribute to radiative forcing of climate change. To quantitatively assess the impact of the anaesthetics on the forcing of climate, detailed information on their properties of heat (infrared, IR) absorption and atmospheric lifetimes are required. ⋯ On the basis of the derived 100 yr GWPs, the average climate impact per anaesthetic procedure at the University of Michigan is the same as the emission of ∼22 kg CO(2). We estimate that the global emissions of inhalation anaesthetics have a climate impact which is comparable with that from the CO(2) emissions from one coal-fired power plant or 1 million passenger cars.

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    • Br J Anaesth · Dec 2010

      Editorial Comment

      Climate effect of inhaled anaesthetics.

      no abstract available

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    • Anesthesia and analgesia · Jul 2010

      Global warming potential of inhaled anesthetics: application to clinical use.

      Inhaled anesthetics are recognized greenhouse gases. Calculating their relative impact during common clinical usage will allow comparison to each other and to carbon dioxide emissions in general. ⋯ Under comparable and common clinical conditions, desflurane has a greater potential impact on global warming than either isoflurane or sevoflurane. N2O alone produces a sizable greenhouse gas contribution relative to sevoflurane or isoflurane. Additionally, 60% N2O combined with potent inhaled anesthetics to deliver 1 MAC of anesthetic substantially increases the environmental impact of sevoflurane and isoflurane, and decreases that of desflurane. N2O is destructive to the ozone layer as well as possessing GWP; it continues to have impact over a longer timeframe, and may not be an environmentally sound tradeoff for desflurane. From our calculations, avoiding N2O and unnecessarily high fresh gas flow rates can reduce the environmental impact of inhaled anesthetics.

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    • Lancet Planet Health · Sep 2017

      Anaesthetic gases, climate change, and sustainable practice.

      no abstract available

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    • Anesthesia and analgesia · May 2012

      Editorial Historical Article

      Sustainable anesthesia.

      no abstract available

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    • Anesthesia and analgesia · May 2012

      Managing fresh gas flow to reduce environmental contamination.

      Anesthetic drugs have the potential to contribute to global warming. There is some debate about the overall impact of anesthetic drugs relative to carbon dioxide, but there is no question that practice patterns can limit the degree of environmental contamination. In particular, careful attention to managing fresh gas flow can use anesthetic drugs more efficiently--reducing waste while achieving the same effect on the patient. ⋯ This article provides background information and discusses strategies for managing fresh gas flow during each phase of anesthesia with the goal of reducing waste when using a circle anesthesia system. Monitoring oxygen and anesthetic gas concentrations is essential to implementing these strategies safely and effectively. Future technological advances in anesthetic delivery systems are needed to make it less challenging to manage fresh gas flow.

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    • Anaesthesia · Jul 2019

      Comment Letter

      Desflurane - balancing the environmental costs and cognitive benefits. A reply.

      “Inhalational anaesthetic agents are chlorofluorocarbons, ‘greenhouse gases’ that have between 349 (sevoflurane) and 3714 (desflurane) times the global warming potential over a 20 year time horizon of carbon dioxide (isoflurane 1401), equivalent to driving a car 18 (sevoflurane) to ~350 miles (desflurane) per hour of anaesthetic use (isoflurane 30 miles); these figures do not account for the additional carbon cost of heating desflurane vaporisers. Together with nitrous oxide, inhalational anaesthetic agents contribute ~2.5% of the 22.8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents the NHS produces annually.” - White

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