Anesthetic Neurotoxicity

Ansgar M. Brambrink, Andrea Orfanakis, Jeffrey R. Kirsch

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Concerns for toxic effects of anesthesia to the brains of the young and the elderly are mounting. While experimental evidence for such effects in the developing brain is strong, the underlying mechanisms are less well understood and debate continues as to whether young humans are at risk for anesthetic neurotoxicity. The phenomenon of postoperative cognitive deterioration in the elderly remains controversial. Time course, severity, and whether or not it persists long term are under debate. For both patient groups, today's evidence is not sufficient to guide change in clinical practice. Well-designed research is therefore imperative to tackle this critical issue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-228
Number of pages22
JournalAnesthesiology Clinics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Aging brain
  • Anesthetics
  • Developing brain
  • Neurotoxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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