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Anesthesia Before Age 2 May Be Linked With Learning Disabilities Later On - featured October 6, 2011

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[Source: Huffington Post]

[Image: anesthesia.JPG]

If an infant or toddler has surgery requiring anesthesia, it could raise the risk of learning disabilities later in life, a new study suggests.

The study, published in the journal Pediatrics and conducted by Mayo Clinic researchers, found that kids who are administered general anesthesia before age 2 may have as much as a three times higher risk of learning problems.

However, the risk seems to only apply to small kids who have had more than one surgery, HealthDay reported.

"A single exposure to anesthesia in surgery has not been shown to be [a] problem, so parents can be reassured that this is not likely to cause any problems," study researcher Dr. Randall Flick, of the Mayo Clinic, told HealthDay.

In the study, researchers analyzed the health data of 350 kids who'd had surgery -- and undergone anesthesia -- before age 2, and 700 kids who didn't have any procedures involving anesthesia before age 2. The kids were all born between 1976 and 1983.

They found that 21.3 percent of 19-year-olds had a learning disability, while 23.6 percent of people who had been exposed just once to anesthesia before age 2 had a learning a disability. Nearly 37 percent of people who been exposed to anesthesia multiple times before age 2 had a learning disability, according to the study.

Read the Rest of this Article on Huffington Post.com

Tags: News of the Week Learning Disabilities Newsletter 7 October 2011