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Basic Anesthesia Machine Checklist

Basic Anesthesia Machine Set-Up Checklist

Prior to Setting up Anesthesia Machine

  • Turn oxygen ON, if pressure is at or below 500 pounds per square inch it is time to open a second tank
  • Turn alarm ON
  • Turn scavenger ON

Basic Anesthesia Machine Set-Up

  • All anesthesia machines vary, so know your machine
  • All parts of the machine must be wiped down with a disinfectant
  • Touch and tighten all fittings on machine
  • Make sure pop-off valve is in the open position
  • Attach breathing hose with Y connector or nonrebreathing system (depending on weight of first surgical patient)
  • Attach reservoir bag (depending on the weight of the first surgical patient)
  • Check/fill anesthetic in vaporizer
  • Check and change carbon dioxide granules or F/Air canister prn
  • Attach exhaust hose from anesthesia machine to exhaust outlet

Pressurize Anesthesia Machine

  • Close pop-off valve
  • Occlude end of breathing tube with your thumb
  • Quickly push oxygen flush button to fill bag
  • Look at the pressure gauge, the pressure should hold steady if there are no leaks
  • With the other hand gently press on the reservoir bag and hold the pressure on the gauge for 45 seconds. If there is no drop in pressure, your machine is leak-free.
  • If the pressure held, turn off oxygen, open pop-off valve, and the machine and the bag you tested it with are ready
  • Test each reservoir bag prior to first use of the day
  • If the pressure does not hold, you need to look further for a leak prior to using the machine

Checking For a Leak in the Anesthesia Machine

  • Get a spray bottle of soapy water and a hand towel
  • Close pop-off valve
  • Occlude end of breathing tube with your thumb
  • Turn oxygen up to 1 liter
  • Fill anesthesia bag
  • Using the spray bottle, spray one area of the machine at a time, gently press on the reservoir bag and watch for bubbles to form on the machine. Also listen; you may hear the leak before you see it. Key areas are the bag neck, site of hose connection to machine, and the soda sorb canister where it connects to machine.
  • Once the leak is found, dry the area, repair the problem, spray with water and check to be sure the leak is truly fixed. Repeat pressurizing the machine.
  • If no leak has yet to be found continue to another part of the anesthesia machine following the above procedure until the leak is found and the machine is 100% functioning.
  • Record on a log form (see our Specialty Folder for an example of this form)

*** make sure you check for leaks after every sodasorb change, which generally should be done after 8 hours of anesthesia time. Preferably not a surgery morning. This avoids frustration on surgery mornings when it takes an extra 20 minutes with your rather “ancient” anesthesia machine, trying to get a good seal with your less than ideal soda sorb canister!***

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