Did you know that every day, an average of 60,000 people undergo surgeries and other medical procedures with the use of anesthesia? More than 1 in 3 of these patients have the procedure involving anesthesia outside of the operating room. If you have a medical practice, having a top-of-the-line anesthesia machine is vital. With the options available, it is not always easy to know how to choose the one that fits your needs.
Let us take a closer look at how to choose an anesthesia machine.
Anesthesia Machine: Integrated or Portable
If your facility offers procedures that use general anesthesia, you need a ventilator as well as an anesthesia machine. This requires an integrated systems machine.
An integrated anesthesia machine is made to work in full operating rooms. It will offer ventilation with volume and pressure control, as well as other advanced modes. The best anesthesia machines will also have three vaporizer chambers, integrated monitoring, compatibility with electronic data systems, and gas delivery management.
If your facility does not offer procedures that require general anesthesia. And you do not need a ventilator, you can turn to a portable anesthesia machine.
These tabletop or portable options are made for fieldwork or procedures that take place out of the operating room. Which still requires sedation.
Proper Safety Measures:
The anesthesia machine you purchase has to have the right safety features. These include a standing bellows ventilator instead of a hanging bellows one. Since a hanging bellows continues to fill even if there is a leak. Some have alarms that alert the anesthesiologist if the patient has become disconnected from the machine.
Look for a machine with a fail-safe mechanism. If the oxygen gets depleted, the fail-safe mechanism will lower the nitrous oxide flow to make sure a hypoxic gas mixture will not reach the patient.
You want to ensure that the machine also has an oxygen sensor to measure the oxygen it is delivering. And to alert if the oxygen levels are too low.
If you need to move the anesthesia machine often, you want a unit that is easy to maneuver and that has large lockable castors and a pull handle.
If you are doing procedures on both adults and children, it is helpful to have at least two vaporizer ports. Children need to be induced with sevoflurane or halothane, while adults are induced via IV and maintained with isoflurane.
Storage space is another feature you want from your anesthesia machine. It should have enough shelves and drawers to hold monitors and supplies like stylets, tubing, and endotracheal tubes. A great feature is if the machine has a built-in suction system or has a way to attach a suction regulator.
Purchase the Right Machine:
When on the market for an anesthesia machine, look for the one that offers the features you need to make each procedure easier and safer.
For more tips on making the right equipment choices, turn to our Technology page!