Aurimas Pečkauskas, Greta Kraujalytė, Jomantė Mačiukaitienė, Andrius Macas


Background. Anxiety and fear of pain are two main factors influencing emotional state, level of satisfaction and perioperative outcomes. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of informing patients by means of a booklet entitled: “Information for the patients undergoing anaesthesia” and its effects on preoperative anxiety.

Methods. After obtaining approval from the Local Ethics Committee this prospective observational study was conducted in Department of General Surgery, Hospital of Lithuanian University of Health Sciences. Representatives were given a questionnaire to examine their knowledge of anaesthesia and to measure their anxiety levels on the evening before meeting the anaesthesiologist prior to their surgery. Following a first completed questionnaire, the patients received the booklet. The second survey was then presented to the respondents after one hour of reading the booklet.

Results. 57 patients undergoing elective general surgery participated. This study has shown a statistically significant lower level of anxiety regarding patients’ awareness of the anaesthesiologist’s role in perioperative care (p=0.01). Moreover, the key determinant of greater anxiety levels is the fear of pain during the surgery (p=0.01). Most importantly, it was found that improving patients’ education by means of the booklet significantly lowers anxiety in the perioperative setting.

Conclusions. In this study we demonstrate, that the information gathered in the pamphlet is useful and informative for the patients and reduces anxiety. After greater patients’ satisfaction was achieved by the information provided in the pamphlet, it has since been routinely used.

Keyword(s): anxiety, fear of pain, handout material, patients’ education, general anaesthesia.
DOI: 10.5200/sm-hs.2018.014
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