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Invited Commentary
August 16, 2017

Confusion Regarding Surgical Delirium—Is Dexmedetomidine the Answer?

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Surgery, The University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
  • 2Yale Department of Surgery, Yale School of Medicine, West Haven, Connecticut
  • 3Veterans Affairs Connecticut Health Care System, West Haven
  • 4Department of Surgery, School of Medicine, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora
  • 5Veterans Affairs Eastern Colorado Health Care System, Aurora
JAMA Surg. 2017;152(8):e171511. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2017.1511

Postoperative delirium, a common and serious postoperative complication, is closely associated with significant morbidity, functional decline, and death. When combined with traditional postoperative complications, delirium further worsens outcomes.1 Not surprisingly, there is enthusiasm for identifying a “magic bullet” to prevent delirium and thereby improve surgical outcomes in vulnerable older adults.

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