Among the cautionary tales of computer-assisted human activity, 2001:A Space Odyssey is a standout. On a journey to Jupiter, HAL the computer kills most of the crew, forcing the survivor to deactivate HAL. Like space travel, while computer-assisted health care has great potential it also contains the full Rumsfeld range of knowns and unknowns. In this edition of Anesthesiology, Joosten et al.1 report a randomized trial of computer-assisted hemodynamic management for 38 patients at a hospital in Brussels, Belgium. The researchers tested the hypothesis that patients managed using a computer-assisted system would experience less intraoperative hypotension (defined as a mean arterial pressure less than 90% of the patient’s baseline value) during intermediate- to high-risk surgery when compared to patients in whom vasopressor and fluid administration were controlled manually. Consistent with their hypothesis and results, they...
Computer-assisted Anesthesia Care: Avoiding the Highway to HAL
This editorial accompanies the article on p. 258.
Accepted for publication April 29, 2021.
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David A. Story; Computer-assisted Anesthesia Care: Avoiding the Highway to HAL. Anesthesiology 2021; 135:203–205 doi: https://doi.org/10.1097/ALN.0000000000003838
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