NYMC Faculty Publications

Title

Anesthesiologists' Preferences regarding Visitor Presence during Placement of Neuraxial Labor Analgesia

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

May 2018

Department

Anesthesiology

Abstract

Introduction: Neuraxial labor analgesia has become an integral part of modern obstetric anesthetic practice. Presence of a familiar person during its placement may be beneficial to the patient. A survey was sent to anesthesiologists practicing obstetric anesthesia in the USA to determine their views. Methods: The survey queried the following: existence of a written policy; would they allow a visitor; visitor's view, sitting or standing; reasons to allow or not allow a visitor; and influence by other staff on the decision. The responses were analyzed using multiple chi-square analyses. Results: Most practitioners supported allowing a visitor during placement. Reduction of patient anxiety and fulfillment of patient request were the major reasons for allowing a visitor. Sitting position and no view of the workspace were preferred. Visitor interference and safety were cited as the major reasons for precluding a visitor. Nonanesthesia providers rarely influenced the decision. Epidural analgesia was the preferred technique. Essentially no bias was found in the responses; there was statistical uniformity regardless of procedures done per week, years in practice, professional certification, geographic region (rural, urban, or suburban), or academic, private, or government responders. Conclusion: The practice of visitor presence during the placement of neuraxial labor analgesia is gaining acceptance.

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