Advanced multiparametric optimization and control studies for anaesthesia



Anaesthesia is a reversible pharmacological state of the patient where hypnosis, analgesia and muscle relaxation are guaranteed and maintained throughout the surgery. Analgesics block the sensation of pain; hypnotics produce unconsciousness, while muscle relaxants prevent unwanted movement of muscle tone. Controlling the depth of anaesthesia is a very challenging task, as one has to deal with nonlinearity, inter- and intra-patient variability, multivariable characteristics, variable time delays, dynamics dependent on the hypnotic agent, model analysis variability, agent and stability issues. The modelling and automatic control of anaesthesia is believed to (i) benefit the safety of the patient undergoing surgery as side-effects may be reduced by optimizing the drug infusion rates, and (ii) support anaesthetists during critical situations by automating the drug delivery systems. In this work we have developed several advanced explicit/multi-parametric model predictive (mp-MPC) control strategies for the control of depth of anaesthesia. State estimation techniques are developed and used simultaneously with mp-MPC strategies to estimate the state of each individual patient, in an attempt to overcome the challenges of inter- and intra- patient variability, and deal with possible unmeasurable noisy outputs. Strategies to deal with the nonlinearity have been also developed including local linearization, exact linearization as well as a piece-wise linearization of the Hill curve leading to a hybrid formulation of the patient model and thereby the development of multiparametric hybrid model predictive control methodology. To deal with the inter- and intra- patient variability, as well as the noise on the process output, several robust techniques and a multiparametric moving horizon estimation technique have been design and implemented. All the studies described in the thesis are performed on clinical data for a set of 12 patients who underwent general anaesthesia.