Postoperative Respiratory Depression: Early Recognition is Key

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Class A Credits: 1

Format: Video

Course Launch Date: 6/30/21

Course Expires: 6/29/22

Unrecognized respiratory compromise can lead to anoxic brain injury or even death and remains a major concern for anesthesia providers.  Scientific literature supports the use of patient monitoring in the postoperative period for patients who have received opioids during surgery.  In particular, the use of pulse-oximetry and capnography in addition to routine nursing care have been shown to provide early detection of post-operative respiratory depression.

This course is sponsored by an educational grant from Medtronic. 

The American Association of Nurse Anesthetists is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

AANA is an approved provider by the California Board of Registered Nursing, CEP #10862.


Post-Test Attempt Notice
A minimum passing score of 80% is required to pass this course. You have TWO opportunities to achieve a passing score. If you fail to achieve a passing score of 80%, you will not receive CE credit for this course.

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The views, information, or opinions expressed within the videos and audio are solely those of the individuals involved and do not necessarily represent those of the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists.

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  • Discuss the state of science behind postoperative monitoring for patients who have received an opioid during surgery.
  • Discuss the importance of monitoring ventilation using capnography to decrease the occurrence of respiratory compromise.
  • Outline sedation and anesthesia techniques that may mitigate the risk of respiratory compromise.

Brian D. Barry Jr., PhD, CRNA, CAE, FAAN


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