Anesthesia has been described as hours of boredom punctuated by moments of terror. In this video, I discuss a rare condition called malignant hyperthermia and how it can result in an emergency in the operating room.
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From Dr. Feinstein’s transcript.
In this video i’m going to be discussing something that can lead to moments of terror, a rare but potentially life-threatening condition called malignant hyperthermia.
Malignant hyperthermia can be defined as a life-threatening hyper-metabolic state characterized by dysregulated calcium which as you may know plays a paramount role in muscle contraction.
Who does malignant hyperthermia affect? It affects people who are both genetically susceptible and have received exposure to a triggering agent.How frequent is it to be genetically susceptible toIt’s more prevalent in kids with an estimated prevalence of 1 in 15 000 pediatric patients and less prevalent in adults with an estimated prevalence of 1 in 40,000 patients.
Dr. Feinstein explains to us that malignant hyperthermia is very rare.
A study that was published about 10 yearsago found that there were 84 identified and reported events of malignant hypothermia that occurred over a five-year period and out of those 84 events eight of those patients died.that means that over the study period about 1.6 people died in the United States every year from an episode of malignant hyperthermia.By way of comparison every year in the united states an average of 62 people are killed from a lightning strike. That means that on average in a given year in the united states a person is about 39 times more likely to die from a lightning strike than they are from an episode of malignant hyperthermia.
But the key to malignant hyperthermia is, that despite its rarity, anesthesiologists are experts in recognizing, diagnosing, and treating this disease.
This excellent video is worth watching in its entirety.