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Anesthesia Safe for Infants, Toddlers, Study Says

Posted 7 Jun 2016 by

TUESDAY, June 7, 2016 – General anesthesia doesn't seem to harm young children's mental development, new research concludes. "A number of animal studies have suggested that exposure to commonly used anesthetic agents in early development could lead to deficits in learning, memory, attention and other cognitive functions," said study author Dr. Lena Sun. She is a professor of pediatric anesthesiology and pediatrics at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. "However, few clinical studies have adequately addressed whether this is also true in humans," Sun said in a Columbia news release. The new study findings are "good news for parents whose children need anesthesia for elective surgery or a diagnostic procedure," she added. Still, the study leaves some important questions unanswered, Sun said. "We need to take a closer look at the effect of anesthesia on cognitive function ... Read more

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