According to an article by Anesthesiology News, unplanned cardiovascular events may occur as the result of increased abdominal pressure related to gas insufflation during an endoscopic procedure.

Paul Terracciano, MD, of Phelps Hospital (Northwell Health), in Sleepy Hollow, NY, noted that over the past five years, there has been a 32% increase in closed claims involving the gastrointestinal suite, with the majority of these claims stemming from air insufflation.

Currently, with most commercial air/CO2 insufflation regulators, the amount of gas insufflation is not a measured parameter and there are no overpressure alarms.

These physiologic imbalances may lead to difficulty breathing, resulting in respiratory distress, reflexive bradycardia and diminished cardiac output manifested by a change to or loss of the pulse oximeter waveform.