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  • Most recent (2010) estimates: 550–650 occurrences per year in the United States
  • Oxygen-enriched atmosphere (OEA) involved in 72–74% of fires; alcohol prep solutions and drapes are most common fuels
  • Most fire-related burn claims involved plastic surgery performed on the face under MAC with supplemental O2 where electrosurgical unit (ESU) comes in contact with drapes/gauze wet with alcohol prep solution


Three elements must exist for fire to occur: ignition source, fuel and oxidizer. The APSF Fire Prevention Algorithm recommends securing the airway with ET tube or LMA if >30% oxygen is required to maintain oxygen saturation.

Table Graphic Jump Location
Table 63-1 Examples of Elements of Fire Triad in an OR Setting
Table Graphic Jump Location
Table 63-2 Elements of Fire in the OR: Mechanisms and Prevention

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