Analysis of urgent/emergent conversions from monitored anesthesia care to general anesthesia with airway instrumentation

Sang Kim, Brian A. Chang, Amreen Rahman, Hung Mo Lin, Samuel DeMaria, Jeron Zerillo, David B. Wax

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Monitored Anesthesia Care (MAC) is an anesthetic service involving the titration of sedatives/analgesics to achieve varying levels of sedation while avoiding general anesthesia (GA) and airway instrumentation. The goal of our study was to determine the overall incidence of conversion from MAC to general anesthesia with airway instrumentation and elucidate reasons and risk factors for conversion. Methods: In this retrospective observational study, all non-obstetric adult patients who received MAC from July 2002 to July 2015 at Mount Sinai Hospital were electronically screened for inclusion via a clinical database. Patient, procedure, anesthetic, and practitioner data were all collected and analyzed to generate descriptive analyses. Subsequent univariate and multivariate analyses were used to identify specific risk factors associated with conversion to GA. Results: Overall, 0.50% (1097/219,061) of MAC cases were converted to GA. Approximately half of conversions were due to the patient’s “intolerance” of MAC (with or without failed regional anesthesia), while the other half were due to physiologic derangements. Body mass index, male sex, American Society of Anesthesiologists Physical Status Classification, anesthesia team composition, and surgical specialty were all associated with risk of conversion to GA. Conclusions: This is one of the first and largest retrospective studies aimed at identifying reasons and risk factors associated with the conversion of MAC to GA. These findings may be used to help better anticipate or prevent these events.

Original languageEnglish
Article number183
JournalBMC Anesthesiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • BMI
  • General anesthesia
  • Monitored anesthesia care
  • Patient safety
  • Retrospective


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