A survey of critical incidents in anaesthesia

  • Patrick UN Nze Department of Anaesthesia, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Enugu, Nigeria
  • Fidelis A Onyekwulu


Aims: To document the frequency of critical incidents during general anaesthesia, identify the causes of incidents and develop preventive strategies to prevent recurrence of such incidents.

Methods: This was a retrospective review of all anaesthetic misadventures in a University Teaching Hospital during a one year period.

Results: During the study period, general anaesthetics were administered on 2190 occasions out of which 54 critical incidents were reported. Human error was more frequently responsible than equipment failure.

Conclusion: Critical incident reporting was effective in revealing latent errors and in clarifying the role of human error in the generation of incidents.

Keywords: anaesthesia, critical incident

Orient Journal of Medicine Vol. 17(3&4) 2005: 7-10

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1115-0521