Anesthesia in the pediatric patient may produce severe psychic trauma. While attempting to avoid this problem, one must maintain an optimum physiologic state as well as provide satisfactory operating conditions. Fundamental principles of pediatric anesthesia and mechanical aids in administration of the anesthetic not only are of interest but are essential for the safety of the child. These factors will be discussed.
Important considerations in premedicating infants and children are age, physical status, and psychic state. Properly administered and timed, premedication will alleviate apprehension, reduce reflex hyperactivity, diminish salivary and bronchial secretions, and produce a degree of basal narcosis. The anesthetic risk and the volume of anesthetic agent necessary to maintain the desired operative state are reduced in the properly premedicated patient.
STRINGHAM JD. Pediatric Anesthesia. AMA Arch Ophthalmol. 1957;57(1):24-32. doi:10.1001/archopht.1957.00930050028007