Advanced

Anaesthesia monitor alarms: a theory-driven approach

Raymer, Karen E.; Bergström, Johan LU and Nyce, James M. (2012) In Ergonomics 55(12). p.1487-1501
Abstract
The development of physiologic monitors has contributed to the decline in morbidity and mortality in patients undergoing anaesthesia. Diverse factors (physiologic, technical, historical and medico-legal) create challenges for monitor alarm designers. Indeed, a growing body of literature suggests that alarms function sub-optimally in supporting the human operator. Despite existing technology that could allow more appropriate design, most anaesthesia alarms still operate on simple, pre-set thresholds. Arguing that more alarms do not necessarily make for safer alarms is difficult in a litigious medico-legal environment and a competitive marketplace. The resultant commitment to the status quo exposes the risks that a lack of an evidence-based... (More)
The development of physiologic monitors has contributed to the decline in morbidity and mortality in patients undergoing anaesthesia. Diverse factors (physiologic, technical, historical and medico-legal) create challenges for monitor alarm designers. Indeed, a growing body of literature suggests that alarms function sub-optimally in supporting the human operator. Despite existing technology that could allow more appropriate design, most anaesthesia alarms still operate on simple, pre-set thresholds. Arguing that more alarms do not necessarily make for safer alarms is difficult in a litigious medico-legal environment and a competitive marketplace. The resultant commitment to the status quo exposes the risks that a lack of an evidence-based theoretical framework for anaesthesia alarm design presents. In this review, two specific theoretical foundations with relevance to anaesthesia alarms are summarised. The potential significance that signal detection theory and cognitive systems engineering could have in improving anaesthesia alarm design is outlined and future research directions are suggested. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
alarms and warnings, advanced human-machine interfaces, anaesthesia, alarms, anaesthesia equipment, equipment design, monitoring, patient, safety, socio-technical systems
in
Ergonomics
volume
55
issue
12
pages
1487 - 1501
publisher
Taylor & Francis
external identifiers
  • wos:000311121900004
  • scopus:84869150822
ISSN
0014-0139
DOI
10.1080/00140139.2012.722695
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
1314e7f2-6c98-462d-a694-824e882c1b5b (old id 3256200)
date added to LUP
2012-12-19 05:03:46
date last changed
2017-10-01 03:15:12
@article{1314e7f2-6c98-462d-a694-824e882c1b5b,
  abstract     = {The development of physiologic monitors has contributed to the decline in morbidity and mortality in patients undergoing anaesthesia. Diverse factors (physiologic, technical, historical and medico-legal) create challenges for monitor alarm designers. Indeed, a growing body of literature suggests that alarms function sub-optimally in supporting the human operator. Despite existing technology that could allow more appropriate design, most anaesthesia alarms still operate on simple, pre-set thresholds. Arguing that more alarms do not necessarily make for safer alarms is difficult in a litigious medico-legal environment and a competitive marketplace. The resultant commitment to the status quo exposes the risks that a lack of an evidence-based theoretical framework for anaesthesia alarm design presents. In this review, two specific theoretical foundations with relevance to anaesthesia alarms are summarised. The potential significance that signal detection theory and cognitive systems engineering could have in improving anaesthesia alarm design is outlined and future research directions are suggested.},
  author       = {Raymer, Karen E. and Bergström, Johan and Nyce, James M.},
  issn         = {0014-0139},
  keyword      = {alarms and warnings,advanced human-machine interfaces,anaesthesia,alarms,anaesthesia equipment,equipment design,monitoring,patient,safety,socio-technical systems},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {12},
  pages        = {1487--1501},
  publisher    = {Taylor & Francis},
  series       = {Ergonomics},
  title        = {Anaesthesia monitor alarms: a theory-driven approach},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00140139.2012.722695},
  volume       = {55},
  year         = {2012},
}