University of Malta

Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Anaesthesia

LEVEL 04 - Years 4, 5 in Modular UG or PG Cert Course


DEPARTMENT Faculty of Medicine and Surgery

DESCRIPTION During the fourth year medical students will complete a one week clinical rotation in anaesthesia where they will be exposed to airway, resuscitative, pain management and preoperative assessment skills.

Study-unit Aims

This study-unit aims to expose students to a variety of different anaesthetic approaches with a special focus on the implications of pre-existing disease for patients undergoing anaesthesia.

This study-unit aims also to introduce students to:
- The basics of anaesthesia i.e. painless surgery.
- The identification of critically ill patients and treatment of reversible failure of essential body functions.
- The relief of pain during labour and after major surgery.

Learning Outcomes

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Describe the risks and benefits associated with regional versus general anaesthesia.
- Analyze the risk factors that lead to increased peri-operative risk.
- Identify various approaches to peri-operative pain management.
- Describe the high level of collaboration (anaesthesia, surgery, nursing, pharmacy) required for the effective management of the patient in the peri-operative period.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Demonstrate the ability to take a focused pre-operative history and physical examination.
- Present the pre-operative assessment in a clear, concise and complete format.
- Explain the current legal and ethical aspects of consent for surgery, anaesthesia and blood transfusion.
- Identify the disease which might offset outcome of surgery and anaesthesia.
- Make an early identification of deteriorating patients.
- Identify and refer patients who would benefit from pain relief.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings

Main Texts:

Lecture Notes on Clinical Anaesthesia Gwinnutt, 2004 2nd Edition, Blackwell Science Ltd ISBN 1405115521.

ERC: 2015 Resuscitation Guidelines - (accessed 07.06.12)

Lecture Notes:

Reid JL, Rubin PC, Walters MW. Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics (Lecture Notes). Blackwell. 7th Ed.

Neal MJ. Medical Pharmacology at a Glance. Wiley-Blackwell. 6th Ed.


Humphrey P. Rang HP, Dale MM, Ritter JM, Flower R. Rang & Dale's Pharmacology. Churchill Livingstone. 6th Ed.

Grahame-Smith D, Aronson J. Oxford Textbook of Clinical Pharmacology and Drug Therapy. Oxford University Press. 3rd Ed.

Bennett PN, Brown MJ. Clinical Pharmacology. Churchill Livingstone. 10th Ed.

British National Formulary. Pharmaceutical Press.

Brunton L, Lazo J, Parker K. Goodman & Gilman's The Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics. McGraw-Hill Medical. 11th Ed.

Waller DG, Renwick AG, Hillier K. Medical Pharmacology and Therapeutics. Saunders. 3rd Ed.

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture, Independent Study & Placement

Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Multiple Choice Questions Examination (1 Hour) Yes 100%

LECTURER/S Carmel Abela
Andrew Aquilina
Noel Borg
Michael Buttigieg
Kevin Crockford
Tania Esposito
David Gatt
Federica Sant
Stephen Sciberras
David Spiteri
Joseph Zarb Adami
Mario Zerafa (Co-ord.)

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.

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