The Operating Room Black Box and You

black box graphicFor some patients desiring elective facial rejuvenation surgery, one of the biggest worries about going ahead is the fear of anaesthesia. Fortunately, many of our cases can be performed under local anaesthesia with sedation, and the technologies today for general anaesthesia are extremely safe and reliable.

For example, you may not know that a person is about 5 to 10 times more likely to die in a car accident in a given year as they are of having a serious complication in the operating room. However, since most people drive regularly but don’t have many operations, the perceived risk is much higher.

As reported recently in the National Post, a Toronto general surgeon is working to make the operating room even much safer. Dr. Teodor Grantcharov has developed an “OR black box” following the lines of the black box placed in all airliners. He was stimulated to do this when a study showed that 34% of all hospital deaths that were preventable occurred from surgery. His technology records audio from all the staff in the operating room, as well as videotaping both the operating room itself and the images being obtained from the surgical endoscopes. The camera images are continuously displayed so that everyone can see them, and all the audiovisual input is recorded for later review.

The goal is to improve feedback to the surgeon to avoid complications and improve outcomes. And should there be a problem or complication, the black box record will be available for analysis. Operating room staff can then determine how the situation could have been avoided or rectified in a given case, and also make recommendations to minimize a reoccurrence of the problem. Furthermore, this information can be shared with other colleagues so that appropriate changes in procedure can be adopted across the surgical profession, improving safety and outcomes for everyone.

At Adamson MD Associates, patient safety is our priority. Dr. Adamson performs surgery at The Cumberland Clinic in Toronto which is a fully equipped facility accredited by the CAAASF for the latest cosmetic surgery procedures. The surgical staff at The Cumberland Clinic are all certified in their specialty by the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada and are dedicated to providing the highest level of care and patient satisfaction. Both twilight and general anaesthesia services are provided by Royal College-certified anaesthesiologists, and all of the nursing staff members are fully accredited for their respective roles in patient care. The recovery room has three beds and offers an overnight package for those having longer procedures or out-of-town patients.

Contact us to schedule a consultation so Dr. Adamson can answer any questions or concerns you might have regarding a facial cosmetic surgery procedure you are interested in. We would be glad to help.


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