management under general anaesthesia

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Bronchospasm may result from instrumentation of the airways under general anaesthetic. Hence, the position of any intubation tubes should be checked as a first step in the search for a cause.

Inadequate oxygenation and the development of a pneumothorax are also causes of bronchospasm. The oxygen supply should be assessed and the chest auscultated for respective investigation.

In the absence of an obvious precipitating cause, the concentration of volatile anaesthetic should be raised as there is a bronchodilating action. Intravenous bronchodilators are the next line of therapy, followed by steroids.

Last reviewed 01/2018