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Alzheimer's Disease

Anesthesia and its Effects on Dementia



Can anesthesia from surgery cause dementia in an elderly person? How might anesthetics affect the brain cells of an elderly person?


Anesthetics from surgery can impair brain function for several days, especially in older persons. Also, surgery itself is stressful and causes pain and fear, which can impair function. Evaluation by a neurologist may be indicated.

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Response by:

Robert P Friedland, MD Robert P Friedland, MD
Formerly, Professor of Neurology
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University