Pre-Sedation Baseline Vitals

A DOCS Education Gold member inquires:
Is it acceptable to use a portable blood pressure monitor that reads only blood pressure and pulse rate for the initial Base Line Reading (BLR) prior to a sedation visit? We would absolutely use our Criticare monitor during the actual sedation visit.


Dr. Jerome Wellbrock, DOCS Education faculty member, responds:

Different equipment may give different readings. I recommend that you take your vitals with the same device during your pre-op workup as you will use during your sedation appointment. Blood pressure, heart rate and pulse oximetry are the minimum.


Dr. Anthony S. Feck, DOCS Education Dean of Faculty, adds:

Assuming I understand your question correctly, I would say it is not acceptable to ignore oxygen saturation at the pre-sedation workup. This is arguably the most valuable information you will obtain prior to the actual sedation visit. If the patient's baseline O2 saturation is less than 94 percent, then you must ascertain the reason for this! If it is below 90 percent, then the patient is not a candidate for sedation in an outpatient setting without a dedicated anesthesiologist.


Dr. PJ Goyal, DOCS Education faculty member, concludes:

Preoperatively, it is ok to take blood pressure and heart rate with a portable monitor as long as you still measure O2 saturation at some point as well. Intraoperatively and postoperatively, using the Criticare monitor is still appropriate standard-of-care. Remember to record the values on your sedation form!

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The information contained in this, or any case study post in Incisor should never be considered a proper replacement for necessary training and/or education regarding adult oral conscious sedation. Regulations regarding sedation vary by state. This is an educational and informational piece. DOCS Education accepts no liability whatsoever for any damages resulting from any direct or indirect recipient's use of or failure to use any of the information contained herein. DOCS Education would be happy to answer any questions or concerns mailed to us at 106 Lenora Street, Seattle, WA 98121. Please print a copy of this posting and include it with your question or request.