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Background: Postoperative cognitive dysfunction is common, but it remains unclear whether there are long-term adverse cognitive effects of surgery combined with anesthesia. The authors examined the association between exposure to surgery and level of cognitive functioning in a sample of 8,503 middle-aged and elderly twins.Methods: Results from five cognitive tests were compared in twins exposed to surgery, classified as major, minor, hip and knee replacement, or other, with those of a reference group without surgery using linear regression adjusted for sex and age. Genetic and shared environmental confounding was addressed in intrapair analyses of 87 monozygotic and 124 dizygotic same-sexed twin pairs in whom one had a history of major surgery and the other did not.Results: Statistically significantly lower composite cognitive score was found in twins with at least one major surgery compared with the reference group (mean difference, -0.27; 95% CI, -0.48 to -0.06), corresponding to one tenth of an SD, that is, a negligible effect size. In the intrapair analysis, the surgery-exposed co-twin had the lower cognitive score in 49% (95% CI, 42 to 56%) of the pairs. None of the other groups differed from the reference group except the knee and hip replacement group that tended to have higher cognitive scores (mean difference, 0.35; 95% CI, -0.18 to 0.87).Conclusions: A history of major surgery was associated with a negligibly lower level of cognitive functioning. The supplementary analyses suggest that preoperative cognitive functioning and underlying diseases were more important for cognitive functioning in mid- and late life than surgery and anesthesia.
CME Credit: 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™
Required Hardware / Software:Adobe Acrobat Reader, Internet connection. Web browser version must have been released within the last three years.
Activity Release Date:01/19/2016
Activity Expiration Date:01/18/2019
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Learning Objectives:After successfully completing this activity, the learner will be able to do the following:
Faculty & Credentials:
Editor-in-Chief: James C. Eisenach, M.D., receives consulting fees from Aerial BioPharma LLC and Cubist Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
CME Editors: Leslie C. Jameson, M.D., has reported no financial relationships with commercial interests. Dan J. Kopacz, M.D., has an equity position in SoloDex, LLC.
Authors: Unni Dokkedal, M.P.H., Tom G. Hansen, M.D., Ph.D., Lars S. Rasmussen, M.D., Ph.D., D.M.Sc., Jonas Mengel-From, M.Sc., Ph.D., and Kaare Christensen, M.D., Ph.D., D.M.Sc., have reported no relevant financial relationships with commercial interests.Authors: Michael S. Avidan, M.B., B.Ch., F.C.A.S.A., and Alex S. Evers, M.D., have reported no relevant financial relationships with commercial interests.
ASA Staff: Kari L. Lee, Editorial Manager, has reported no financial relationships with commercial interests. Ginger Clark, Editor, has an equity position in Merck & Co.
Disclosure StatementThe American Society of Anesthesiologists remains strongly committed to providing the best available evidence-based clinical information to participants of this educational activity and requires an open disclosure of any potential conflict of interest identified by our faculty members. It is not the intent of the American Society of Anesthesiologists to eliminate all situations of potential conflict of interest, but rather to enable those who are working with the American Society of Anesthesiologists to recognize situations that may be subject to question by others. All disclosed conflicts of interest are reviewed by the educational activity course director/chair to ensure that such situations are properly evaluated and, if necessary, resolved. The American Society of Anesthesiologists educational standards pertaining to conflict of interest are intended to maintain the professional autonomy of the clinical experts inherent in promoting a balanced presentation of science. Through our review process, all American Society of Anesthesiologists CME activities are ensured of independent, objective, scientifically balanced presentations of information. Disclosure of any or no relationships will be made available for all educational activities.
The information provided at this CME activity is for continuing education purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the independent medical judgment of a healthcare provider relative to diagnostic and treatment options of a specific patient’s medical condition.
Core Competencies:Medical knowledge
Target Audience:ANESTHESIOLOGY Journal CME is intended for anesthesiologists. Researchers and other health care professionals with an interest in anesthesiology may also participate.
CME Credit: 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™
The American Society of Anesthesiologists is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
The American Society of Anesthesiologists designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
1.00 Non-physician Credit Non-physicians may receive a Certificate of Completion stating that this activity was designated for 1.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.
Activity Release Date: 1/19/2016 (All day) Activity Expiration Date: 1/18/2019 (All day)
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