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A Simulation Study of the Effects of Operating Room Noise on the Performance of Anesthesia Providers

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Technical Report,01 Oct 1999,30 Oct 1999

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Uniformed Services University Of The Health Sciences Bethesda United States

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The purpose of this study was to add to the current research on the effects of noise and environmental stimuli on provider performance. The secondary purpose of the study was to determine whether using an anesthesia simulator is effective for studying the effects of environmental stimuli, such as noise, on performance. The study was designed using atest- retest format. The subjects were thirteen senior nurse anesthesia residents. Each student was given a scenario and asked to perform a standard induction sequence on the anesthesia simulator. The subjects performed an induction sequence in a quiet, controlled environment and were then asked to return to the simulator a week later to perform a similar scenario in a noisy environment. The average noise levels in the control scenario were 24.8dbA and the average for the noisy scenario was 50.5 dbA. All scenarios were recorded and analyzed using Chi-Square statistical testing, with a significance level of p.05. After all scenarios had been completed, the subjects subjectively evaluated the degree of realism that the simulator provided as well as their perceptions of noise in the operating room. Based on the data collected in this study, it could not be concluded that noise had either a positive or negative impact on the performance of anesthesia providers.This study did, however, demonstrate that the use of anesthesia patient simulators is a practical, educational method as performance was improved by repeat training on the simulator.

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