Specific Considerations with Pulmonary Disease - Effects of Anesthesia and Surgery on Pulmonary Function

General anesthesia decreases lung volumes and promotes

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mismatch and atelectasis formation. Many anesthetic drugs blunt the ventilatory response to hypercarbia and hypoxia. Postoperatively, atelectasis and hypoxemia are common findings, especially in patients with preexisting pulmonary disease. Pulmonary function is further compromised by postoperative pain, which can limit coughing and lung expansion.

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