Scientific article
Open access

Local anaesthetics risks perception : a web-based survey

Published inHeliyon, vol. 10, no. 1, e23545
Publication date2024-01

Background: The use of local anaesthetics (LAs) is usually associated with few adverse effects, but local anaesthetic systemic toxicity (LAST) can result in serious harm and even death. However, practitioner awareness regarding this risk has been little studied.

Methods: This was a closed, web-based study carried out at two Swiss university hospitals using a fully automated questionnaire. The main objective was to evaluate LAST awareness and LA use among various medical practitioners. The secondary objective was to determine whether these physicians felt that a tool designed to compute maximum safe LA doses should be developed.

Results: The overall participation rate was 40.2 % and was higher among anaesthesiologists (154/249, 61.8 % vs 159/530, 30.0 %; P < .001). Anaesthesiologists identified the risk of LAST and the systems involved more frequently than non-anaesthesiologists (85.1 % vs 43.4 %, P < .001). After adjusting for years of clinical experience, age, country of diploma, frequency of LA use, clinical position and being an anaesthesiologist, the only significant associations were this latter factor (P < .001) and clinical position (P = .016 for fellows and P = .046 for consultants, respectively). Most respondents supported the development of a tool designed to compute maximum safe LA doses (251/313, 80.2 %) and particularly of a mobile app (190/251, 75.7 %).

Conclusions: LAST awareness is limited among practitioners who use LAs on a regular basis. Educational interventions should be created, and tools designed to help calculate maximum safe LA doses developed. The actual frequency of unsafe LA doses administration would also deserve further study.

  • Dose calculation
  • Drug safety
  • Local anaesthetics
  • Toxicity
  • Web-based survey
Citation (ISO format)
BECKMANN, Tal Sarah et al. Local anaesthetics risks perception : a web-based survey. In: Heliyon, 2024, vol. 10, n° 1, p. e23545. doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2023.e23545
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ISSN of the journal2405-8440

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