Emergence delirium

Emergence delirium

Emergence delirium
Classification and external resources
ICD-10 F13.4
ICD-9 292.81

Emergence delirium (sometimes referred to as agitated emergence, emergence agitation, emergence excitement, or postanesthetic excitement) is a condition in which emergence from general anesthesia is accompanied by psychomotor agitation. Some see a relation to pavor nocturnus [1] while other see a relation to the excitement stage of anesthesia.

In children

The pediatric anesthesia emergence delirium scale may be used to measure the severity of this condition in children.[2]


The overall incidence of emergence delirium is 5.3%, with a significantly greater incidence (12-13%) in children. The incidence of emergence delirium after halothane, isoflurane, sevoflurane or desflurane ranges from 2-55%.[3]


  1. ^ http://www.asa2012.com/PDFs_abstracts/davidson.pdf
  2. ^ Sikich, N; Lerman, J (2004). "Development and psychometric evaluation of the pediatric anesthesia emergence delirium scale". Anesthesiology 100 (5): 1138–45.  
  3. ^ Mason, LJ (2004). "Pitfalls of Pediatric Anesthesia: Emergence Delirium". Richmond, Virginia: Society for Pediatric Anestheisa. Retrieved 2012-06-21. 

Further reading

  • Smessaert A, Schehr CA, Artusio JF, Jr. (April 1960). "Observations in the immediate postanaesthesia period. II. Mode of recovery". Br J Anaesth. 32 (4): 181–5.