Conceptual and technical insights into the basis of neuromuscular monitoring

Anaesthesia. 2017 Jan;72 Suppl 1:16-37. doi: 10.1111/anae.13738.


Unrecognised postoperative residual neuromuscular block remains a frequent occurrence in recovery rooms. Evidence indicates that current practice continues to perpetuate the status quo, in which 10-40% of patients experience postoperative residual weakness. A departure from the current practice requires small efforts on the clinicians' part. This review addresses several selected core questions regarding neuromuscular blockade monitoring and provides a framework to rationally discuss and develop basic guidelines for the use of neuromuscular blocking agents in patient care.

Keywords: monitoring neuromuscular function; neuromuscular blocking drugs; tetanic stimulation; train-of-four (TOF); twitch height.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Electric Stimulation
  • Electromyography
  • Humans
  • Neuromuscular Blockade
  • Neuromuscular Monitoring / adverse effects
  • Neuromuscular Monitoring / methods*
  • Peripheral Nerves / physiology
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic