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Anesthesiology/siezure under anesthetic


Hi there,
I recently went under for parotidectomy and if I understand correctly, confused everybody in the OR by having a seizure, including the highly experienced Anesthesiologist. I didn't have the lump removed, I guess we were not that far into the surgery when it happened, but the doctor said he thought I was having a seizure and looked at my feet and confirmed it, but I should not have had one at that stage in the anesthesia (not sure what that even means). I don't have epilepsy, and have been tested for it in the past because of memory loss. My heart rate was a little low (52) compared to what it usually is (upper 60s). I had a touch of a cold.
I haven't been able to speak to my doctor yet while fully alert to ask any questions, but they did a cat scan which came back fully normal, and I'm scheduled for an EEG to try and figure out why. My questions are: 1. What could have caused this? and 2. What questions should I be asking? What would you want to know if this happened to you?
Thank you for your time and your help.

I don't know what could have caused this (or if it was a real seizure) but the drugs we use for anesthesia actually have anti-seizure properties. The only question I can think of (although if you say you had an experienced anesthesiologist it makes no sense) is whether you received succinylcholine as a muscle relaxant (which will cause your whole body to twitch for a 30 seconds. I would also make sure all my labs were normal (especially Calcium and Potassium).

Ronald Levy, MD
Professor of Anesthesiology


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Ronald Levy, M.D.


Associate Professor of Anesthesiology, University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. I am a board certified anesthesiologist who can answer all questions related to any type of Anesthesia with the exception of Pain Management.

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