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Revista Brasileira de Anestesiologia

Print version ISSN 0034-7094

Abstract

OLIVEIRA, Katia Ferreira de; CLIVATTI, Jefferson; MUNECHIKA, Masashi  and  FALCAO, Luiz Fernando dos Reis. What do patients know about the work of anesthesiologists?. Rev. Bras. Anestesiol. [online]. 2011, vol.61, n.6, pp. 724-727. ISSN 0034-7094.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-70942011000600004.

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Modern international studies portray the lack of knowledge of patients regarding the education and role of anesthesiologists. There are no current data on this subject in the national scenario. The objective of this study was to assess the level of knowledge of patients about the education and areas of performance of these specialists. METHODS: This is a prospective study undertaken at a tertiary university hospital in São Paulo. During an 18-month period preoperative patients were interviewed. The data were analyzed by the Fisher's exact test, Chi-square test, and Mann-Whitney test according to the variable investigated. In the study, an α risk < 0.05 of making a type I error was considered. RESULTS: Four hundred patients, 203 (50.75%) males and 197 (49.25%) females, aged between 18 and 89 years were included in this study. A total of 207 patients (51.75%) recognized anesthesiologists as physicians. Two hundred and eighty-nine (72.25%) patients answered that anesthesiologists care for patients during surgeries, while 256 (64%) did not know that anesthesiologists determine whether patients are fit to undergo surgery. A statistical correlation was observed between the level of schooling and the presence of prior experience with anesthetic-surgical procedures and the correct response to the medical education of anesthesiologists. A significant difference was not observed between the group of patients who underwent pre-anesthetic evaluation and those that did not undergo the evaluation regarding the knowledge of the medical education of anesthesiologists. CONCLUSIONS: A large proportion of patients have a limited knowledge about the education and role of anesthesiologists. Pre-anesthetic evaluation did not increase the proportion of answers that anesthesiologists have medical education.

Keywords : Anesthesiology; Knowledge [Attitudes and Health Practice].

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