The patient holds their eyes wide open, transfixed with fear as the anesthesiologist swiftly motions a face mask forward (see figure). Numbly watching, the patient has a vivid recollection of the doctor mentioning “gas mixture” and “sevoflurane” from 2 days before. “This is it, it’s happening,” ruminates the patient, anxiously preparing as the mask inches closer. Two more doctors loom over, gently whispering to the patient “count down from 10,” in hopes of distracting the patient as the gases take their effect. It is clear that the act of administering inhalational anesthesia is striking fear and anxiety in the patient. As the countdown continues, the uncertainty with going under begins to plague the patient’s mind with fear-ridden thoughts: “What if I’m not fully asleep during the operation? What if I don’t wake up after?” But, amid...

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