Pro-Con Debate: Electroencephalography-Guided Anesthesia for Reducing Postoperative Delirium

David Hao, Bradley A. Fritz, Daniel Saddawi-Konefka, Ben Julian A. Palanca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Postoperative delirium (POD) has significant implications on morbidity, mortality, and health care expenditures. Monitoring electroencephalography (EEG) to adjust anesthetic management has gained interest as a strategy to mitigate POD. In this Pro-Con commentary article, the pro side supports the use of EEG to reduce POD, citing an empiric reduction in POD with processed EEG (pEEG)-guided general anesthesia found in several studies and recent meta-analysis. The Electroencephalography Guidance of Anesthesia to Alleviate Geriatric Syndromes (ENGAGES) trial is the exception to this, and issues with methods and achieved depths are discussed. Meanwhile, the Con side advocates that the use of EEG to reduce POD is not yet certain, citing that there is a lack of evidence that associations between anesthetic depth and POD represent causal relationships. The Con side also contends that the ideal EEG signatures to guide anesthetic titration are currently unknown, and the potential benefits of reduced anesthesia levels may be outweighed by the risks of potentially insufficient anesthetic administration. As the public health burden of POD increases, anesthesia clinicians will be tasked to consider interventions to mitigate risk such as EEG. This Pro-Con debate will provide 2 perspectives on the evidence and rationales for using EEG to mitigate POD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)976-982
Number of pages7
JournalAnesthesia and analgesia
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1 2023


Dive into the research topics of 'Pro-Con Debate: Electroencephalography-Guided Anesthesia for Reducing Postoperative Delirium'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this