What is WAG?

Waste Anesthetic Gas (WAG) is the small amount of anesthetic gases that leak into the surrounding room during medical procedures. In the PACU, WAG may be exhaled by patients recovering from anesthesia. This gas is not typically harmful to the patient, but the health effects could be cumulative for nurses working in the patient's breathing zone.1, 2

WAG Video Resources
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The above infrared video shows a routine check performed by a nurse. Waste anesthetic gas is breathed out by the patient and lingers directly in the nurse’s breathing zone.

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Patient Cough
Accelerated outgassing of
WAG during patient cough

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Patient Exhalation
Patient exhaling post-extubation

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Post-Extubation
Patient exhaling post-extubation

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After 30 Minutes
Patient exhalation 30 minutes
post-extubation