University Hospital of Sharjah achieves breakthrough in sedation of patients

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Dubai: The University Hospital of Sharjah (UHS) has become the first hospital in the UAE and the Middle East to introduce the latest sedation technique for patients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), with the introduction of volatile anaesthetic gases Sevoflurane and Isoflurane with considerable success.

The use of volatile anaesthetic gases has become a well-established modality of sedation in many regions of the world, including Northern Europe, especially in Germany and Scandinavian countries. Owing to its ability to ensure results, it has proven to be the first choice in the treatment of numerous conditions in patients.

Dr Mamoun Elzubair, consultant, Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine, at the hospital, said: “The most notable advantage of using volatile anaesthesia gases to induce sedation in patients is the relatively short and predictable awakening time, even after deep or prolonged sedation. The process involves the administration and elimination of an active substance via the patient’s respiratory tract. The elimination of Isoflurane does not affect liver and kidney function, while Sevoflurane is poorly metabolised in the liver. Therefore, one of these gases is infused via syringe pump to a modified humidifier and heat exchanger called ‘Anaconda,’ before the gas is evaporated and then inhaled by the patient.”

He added, “An activated carbon filter in ‘Anaconda’ binds the anaesthetic gas and helps more than 90 per cent of exhaled anaesthetic gas to be inhaled again in the next breath. For gas sedation, exhaled gas should be monitored with advanced Gas Modules to ensure adequate usage and to enhance safety of patients.”

Dr Ali Obaid Al Ali, UHS CEO and member of the Board of Trustees, said: “At UHS, we are committed to equipping various departments with the most advanced and secure protocols and technologies, which in turn contributes the overall excellence of the UAE’s health care sector. The ICU unit is a top priority for us, especially in the wake of the pandemic, as it serves as the life-saving unit for some post-operative and geriatric cases.”

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