Decision Support

  • Michael M. Vigoda
  • Michael O'Reilly
  • Frank J. Gencorelli
  • David A. Lubarsky
Part of the Health Informatics book series (HI)

Dr. Jones, an anesthesiologist, boards a plane to visit her ailing father who is scheduled to have a colectomy after recently being diagnosed with colon cancer. She is worried about his cardiac status and long-standing history of diabetes. Having been in practice for 20 years, she is also concerned about a number of aspects of his care. Will he receive his usual dose of insulin despite the fact that he is NPO? Will he receive prophylactic antibiotics within an appropriate time frame? Will his ß-blockers be continued? Will the anesthesia team monitor his glucose during his procedure? Will he become hypothermic? Will he suffer any cognitive dysfunction as a result of his anesthetic?

Glancing through the door at the cockpit as she boards the plane, Dr. Jones considers the often-cited similarity of the work environments of pilots and anesthesiologists. She imagines that the pilot would be as bewildered by the array of physiologic/ventilatory monitors as she is by the myriad of aircraft monitors. However, as she takes her seat, she realizes that a profound difference exists between their work environments. Dr. Jones is not concerned about the pilot or the air traffic controller (both of whom she has never met). She is not concerned about this particular aircraft (on which she has never flown). The length of her flight is not dependent on which particular pilot is in charge of the aircraft or which individual air traffic controller is involved in transferring the aircraft from one geographic zone to another. She does not worry about whether the plane has enough fuel to get to her destination, whether the plane will land on the runway (and not before or after), whether the plane will come too close to another plane, or whether the takeoff speed will be sufficient to get the plane airborne.


Decision Support Malignant Hyperthermia Computerize Physician Order Entry Psychologic Refractory Period Anesthesia Information Management System 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael M. Vigoda
    • 1
  • Michael O'Reilly
    • 2
  • Frank J. Gencorelli
    • 3
  • David A. Lubarsky
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Miami/Jackson Memorial HospitalMiamiUSA
  2. 2.University of Michigan HospitalsUSA
  3. 3.University of Miami, Miller School of MedicineUSA

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