Another study, presented at the same meeting, found that between one and two out of every 100 children receiving general anesthesia reported possible or probable awareness during surgery. The study, which was done by researchers at the University of Michigan Health System, found that 1.3 percent of children reported memories of their surgical procedures that the researchers felt indicated "possible" awareness during the surgery. Another 0.3 percent had specific enough memories that they were considered to have "probable" awareness during the procedure.
Many of these children reported being scared or hurting during the surgery. Interestingly, however, fewer children with possible or probable awareness would be upset about having to undergo surgery again than youngsters who had no memories of the surgery -- 10 percent versus 15 percent, according to the study.
To learn more about children and anesthesia, visit the Nemours Foundation.
SOURCES: Charles DiMaggio, Ph.D., M.P.H., assistant professor, clinical epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia of Physicians and Surgeons, New York City; Peter Davis, M.D., anesthesiologist-in-chief, Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh; Oct. 21, 2008, presentation, American Society of Anesthesiologists annual meeting, Orlando, Fla.