Boom Seen for Patient-Education Anesthesia Web Sites

Date Published: 
Wed, 2002-05-01

Cosmetic Anesthesiologist Barry L. Friebderg, MD, has logged nearly 10,000 visitors in just 7 months

NEWPORT BEACH, CA - May 1, 2002 -- A Southern California-based cosmetic anesthesiologist, Barry L. Friedberg, MD, says consumers visiting physician web sites has become even more popular now that more physicians are responding to consumer demand and offering this patient-focused service. Spearheading the anesthesia-focused consumer web site initiative, Dr. Friedberg agrees with the Memphis Business Journal article, "Doctors Beginning to See Benefit of Putting Their Practices Online," April 19, 2002: "Searching the Internet for medical information isn't a new phenomenon, but doctors are starting to respond to demand in a big way, creating customized Web sites to educate patients."

Dr. Friedberg, a clinical instructor in Anesthesia at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and host of the anesthesia patient education web site www.doctorfriedberg.com says, "This growing trend of consumers tapping physician web sites for health information, really started mushrooming last year and is now being tracked and heeded. In fact, a March 2001 Harris Interactive survey found that 75% of all adults online us the Internet to look for health info -- 92% of those patients are using the Internet as a resource to learn about a diagnosis or prescribed treatment to become more informed, involved and in control."

Dr. Friedberg, a globally recognized leader in the field of Anesthesia and provider of innovative care for the discriminating cosmetic surgery anesthesia patient, pioneered an anesthesia technique 10 years ago for office-based cosmetic surgery that eliminates the most common side effects of surgery - post-operative nausea and vomiting (PONV).

Douglas E. Goldstein, an internationally prominent expert in wired, wireless, and digital healthcare communications, and author of e-Healthcare: Harness the Power of Internet e-Commerce and e-Care (Aspen, 2000), says, "Studies show that people want information from and trust their doctor. However, most physicians don't have the time or the editorial expertise to post in depth health information on their own Web sites. Sharing trusted web sites like www.doctorfriedberg.com with the patient CAN enhance the physician patient relationship. Dr. Friedberg should be commended for seeing this need and compassionately filling it."

Dr. Friedberg adds, "We are a society of knowledgeable consumers who deserve to know our anesthesia options when electing a cosmetic surgery procedure, and this is an option that should be available. As a patient advocate, I encourage patients to know their anesthesia options -- you, your surgeon, and your anesthesiologist should partner together to ensure that you have the best possible experience and outcome."

And, the proof of the web site's value is in the countless emails received by Dr. Friedberg as a result of his value-added, solid educational web site.

Writes one consumer, Maryann, "I typed in breast augmentation with local and sedation and your web site popped up. I do not like general anesthesia and I want to have a few things done over the next year. The fear of anesthesia has caused me to delay. Now that I have found an alternate route I feel comfortable, with I will make plans to go forward. Thank you for taking the time to reply. I greatly appreciate your efforts." (This is an actual letter on file with Dr. Friedberg received via email Friday, April 19, 2002).

He is well published and respected by surgeons worldwide. In an "Outpatient Surgery" March 2002, Letter to the Editor, the "ABC's of Anesthesia", he wrote, "Over the past 10 years of using propofol ketamine anesthesia, I have had a 0.5 percent rate in a population of nearly 3000 patients who experienced a previous 35 percent postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) results. This method works well for hernia surgery, arthroscopy, gynecological laparoscopy, lithotripsy, and all cosmetic surgeries, ranging from abdominoplasty, to sub-pectoral breast augmentation, to facelifts."

Explains Friedberg, "Ten years ago I developed the PK technique, now used by many members of the Society for Office Based Anesthesia (SOBA) throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan and England, so that cosmetic surgery patients could enjoy a safe and PONV free experience - and it works amazingly well." For maximum results, Dr. Friedberg has adopted the use of the Bispectral Index (BIS) monitoring to the combination of propofol ketamine anesthesia. The BIS monitor improves accuracy of dosing propofol, saving 20 percent of unnecessary medication, resulting in less depression, less risk, improved safety, and ultimately speeding recovery from anesthesia, saving many dollars in wasted anesthetic.


For the past decade, Barry L. Friedberg, MD, a Stanford trained, board certified Anesthesiologist in Corona del Mar, CA, has practiced exclusively in the subspecialty of office-based cosmetic surgery anesthesia. He is the founder of the Society for Office Anesthesiologists (SOFA) which merged with the Society for Office Based Anesthesia (SOBA), a non-profit, international society dedicated to improving patient safety through education. SOBA includes anesthesiologists, CRNAs and dentist anesthesiologists. Dr. Friedberg is the developer of propofol ketamine (PK) technique. Many members of SOBA throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan and England are enthusiastically using his PK technique in their practices. Dr. Friedberg has published five articles in peer reviewed journals on his technique. His original 1993 article has been cited in twelve subsequent peer reviewed journal articles and two textbooks on anesthesia. Dr. Friedberg is a frequent contributor to electronic discussion groups that include the SOBA (www.soba.org), and the Society for Ambulatory Anesthesia (SAMBA: www.sambahq.org) websites.

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