Intraoperative panic attack in patients undergoing awake craniotomy: a retrospective analysis of risk factors

Kotoe Kamata, Takashi Maruyama, Ryu Komatsu, Makoto Ozaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Intraoperative anxiety is the most common psychological response of the patient during awake craniotomy. Psychological stress can trigger patient decline, resulting in failed awake craniotomy and significantly poor outcomes. This study aimed to identify the risk factors for panic attack (PA) during awake craniotomies. Methods: With the local ethics committee approval, we conducted a manual chart review of the medical record of patients who underwent consecutive awake craniotomies between November 1999 and October 2016 at Tokyo Women's Medical University. A total of 405 patients were identified and assigned to 2 groups based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-V criteria: those that met the PA criteria (Group PA) and those that did not (Group non-PA). Patient characteristics and the incidence of the PA specifier were collected. The features of the two groups were statistically compared, and risk factors for PA occurrence were determined by regression analysis. Results: Sixteen of 405 patients met the diagnostic criteria of PA. Patients' characteristics were not statistically different between the groups. Multivariate logistic regression showed that intraoperative anxiety (p = 0.0002) and age younger than 39 years (as opposed to age > = 39 years; p = 0.0328) were significantly associated with the occurrence of PA during awake craniotomy. Conclusions: For patients undergoing awake craniotomy, intraoperative anxiety and age younger than 39 years were considered risk factors of PA. As PA often necessitates conversion to general anesthesia, intensive perioperative psychological support and pain management are required to achieve patient satisfaction and the surgical goal of awake craniotomy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)854-861
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Anesthesia
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec


  • Anxiety
  • Awake craniotomy
  • Complications
  • Panic attack
  • Psychological responses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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