The Anesthesia Awareness Campaign was conceived and formed in 1998 as the first patient advocacy and information service in the world dedicated to preventing patients from experiencing intra-operative awareness (Anesthesia Awareness) and its consequences through education, prevention, and empowerment by replacing ignorance or fear with knowledge. 1998-Present


Instrumental in the issuance of the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations’ (JCAHO) Sentinel Event Alert #32, issued October 6, 2004 entitled Preventing, and Managing the Impact of, Anesthesia Awareness

Delivered keynote speech at the 6th International Symposium on Memory and Awareness in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care (MAAC6) in Hull, England, June 2004

Recorded for Library of Congress’ "Living Legends" project; to be housed at The National Archives

Testified about Anesthesia Awareness before the Pennsylvania House of Representatives Judicial Committee, August 25, 2004

Testified about Anesthesia Awareness before the courts of: Louisiana, 2003; Tennessee, 2003; Texas, 2003; Georgia, 2003; Virginia, 2003; Ohio, 2004; California, 2004; Kentucky, 2005

Addressed Grand Rounds: St. Vincent’s Catholic University Medical Center, New York, NY, July 2001; Old Dominion University, Virginia Beach, VA, April 2004; University of Virginia Medical Center, Charlottesville, June 19,2002; Inova Fairfax Hospital, Fairfax, VA, March 3, 2004; West Virginia University Medical Center, Morgantown, WV, March 10, 2004; Johns Hopkins University Medical Center, September 16, 2004; HCA Reston Hospital Center, March 17, 2004;

Created and maintain the first website devoted to Anesthesia Awareness, This site has been ranked a top site based on the number of hits received on this topic; more than 52,000 hits March 1988 to date.

Spoke with over 2500 victims who have experienced Anesthesia Awareness

Distributed over 10,000 Anesthesia Awareness information packets to the medical community, the general public, and the media.

Recognized by "Consumers Advocating for Patient Safety (CAPS)" as the Patient Advocacy Organization of the Month, February and March 2005

Conceived, designed, and produced the first-of-its-kind medical alert-type bracelets for individuals susceptible to Anesthesia Awareness; December 2004

Anesthesia Awareness consultant to Beyond Productions, Inc., production of "When Anesthesia Fails," in October 2004, and "Anesthesia Nightmares," in January 2005 for the Discovery Health Channel® and "Bodyshock" for the BBC; interviewed for a third Discovery Health Channel® documentary on BIS Monitors, April 11, 2005

Being contacted by more and more high school and college students wanting to write papers on awareness.

Scheduled to speak at combined meeting of Federated Ambulatory Surgery Association (FASA) and The Association of PeriOperative Registered Nurses (AORN), October 20, 2005

Link added to by the Scientific Society of Anesthesia of Belgium ( May 30, 2005


"I’m Scheduled for Surgery: Questions to Ask"

"What is Anesthesia Awareness?"

"What is PTSD?"

"Help! I Am Living with a Loved One with PTSD and They’re Driving Me Crazy!"

"I Was Awake"

"Listen to the Victims"

"Anesthesia Awareness: A Guide for Internists"

"Anesthesia Awareness: A Guide for Surgeons"

"Anesthesia Awareness: A Plea for Anesthesiologists"

"PTSD Sequelae and What the Physician Can Do When Awareness Occurs"

"Partial and Evolving Bibliography on Anesthesia, Anesthesia Awareness, Trauma, Post-traumatic Stress, and Anesthesia Monitoring"

"Anesthesia Awareness Campaign, Inc.’s President’s Suggested Reading List"

"Suggestions for Improvement in the Anesthesia System From the Anesthesia Awareness Campaign, Inc."


Carol Weihrer experienced Anesthesia Awareness first-hand during the removal of an eye. She has subsequently immersed herself in studying the published research on the topic, conferring with anesthesia researchers and practitioners, and assisting individuals conducting academic research. This unique perspective gives her the opportunity to relate to other victims, the passion and knowledge to carry on the fight to reduce or eliminate the phenomenon of anesthesia awareness, and the attitude of "one who feels called" to this work.


National Presbyterian Church and Chancel Choir

Toastmasters International, Inc., Reston, Virginia: Achieved Competent Toastmaster rating, October 2004; Vice President of Education, Speakeasies Club # 8805, December 2004-May 2005


B.A. in Music (Flute Performance) West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV, 1973

M.M. in Music (Flute Performance) The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC, 1974



ABC’s 20/20 Newsmagazine, February 1999, Bill Ritter

CBS Evening News with Dan Rather, November 23, 2003

KENS5, San Antonio, TX, November 21, 2004

ABC World News Tonight, January 23, 2005

Sally Jesse Raphael

John Walsh Show

Montel Williams Show, April 12 and 25, July 18, 2005

WJLA Washington, DC (ABC affiliate), October 30, 2003, Cathy Fowler

WHAS11, Louisville, Kentucky, April 21, 2005, Seymour: "Inmates Say State’s Lethal Injection Cruel and Unusual"

The Today Show, October 14, 2003, Matt Lauer

WRC Washington, DC (NBC affiliate), October 30, 2003, "Waking Up During Surgery," Doreen Gentzler

BBC News, BBC-London , Evening News June 2004

KPTV Fox 12, Phoenix, AZ (March 2005)

KVOA Tucson AZ (NBC affiliate)

WTTG Washington, DC (Fox affiliate)

KPTV Portland, OR (Fox affiliate)

WKYT, KY, April 20, 2005

WTVQ, (KY), April 20, 2005

WHAS 11, Louisville, KY, April 21, 2005


Discovery Health Channel: "When Anesthesia Fails"

Discovery Health Channel: "Anesthesia Nightmares," January 31, 2005 premiere

BBC: "Bodyshock"

Chilean Public TV: "VIDA 2000" series documentary, filmed August 31, 2004 (air date unknown)

Fox5 Washington, DC: February 2005

CNN: February 2005

MSNBC: February 2005

Discovery: The Science Channel, documentary, "Beyond Tomorrow" series (episode on BIS monitoring); premiering in Australia June 29, 2005, also scheduled for USA, Asia, and Latin America, Beyond Productions, Australia


NPR, Radio Health Network (double feature on Awareness), 1999

NPR Day by Day Show, June 19, 2004: selections from Library of Congress Living Legends Project (on awareness)

Harrisburg, PA radio, August 19, 2004

NPR, Sound Portraits, May 13, 2005

NPR on effects of under-sedation

BBC-Scotland, June 2004; February 2005

BBC-Wales, June 2005

BBC-London, "The Morning Show" with Heather Peyton, May 18, 2004 (live)


Washington Post, Boodman: Wake-Up Call, November 23, 2004

USA Today, Davis: Group Targets Anesthesia Error, October 13, 2003

Health Sciences Institute, Thompson, Intraoperative Awareness (IOA), October 27, 2003

Quad City Times, Treiber: Wake-Up Call, October 2004

Times Community Newspapers of Northern Virginia, Zimmermann: "Reston Woman Devotes Life to Educating Medical Professional, Public, About ‘Anesthesia Awareness’" November 12, 2003

New York Times, Liptak: "Critics Say Execution Drug May Hide Suffering" October 7, 2003

Chicago Tribune, February 28, 2000

Baltimore Sun, February 11, 2004

Columbia News Service, Halter: "Waking Up During Surgery: A Living Nightmare" March 1, 2004

Los Angeles Times

San Antonio (TX) Express, Rigby: "Hospitals Asked to Ensure that Anesthesia is Fully Working" November 21, 2004

South Bend (IN) Tribune, December 8, 2004

Unknown, Korea (in Korean) 2005

Boston Globe, February 8, 2005

Associated Press Syndicate

Naples Daily News, FL, April 11, 2005

Louisville Courier-Journal (KY), April 21, 2005

Frankfort, KY, April 20 and 21, 2005

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 24, 2005


Health Day, Doheny: "‘Anesthesia Awareness': When Patients Wake Up During Surgery" Oct 28, 2004

Outpatient Surgery, Taylor: "Raising Awareness of Anesthesia Awareness" June 2004

Woman’s Own (England)

She (England), September 2004, pp. 34-37

Woman (England)

London Guardian Sunday News Magazine, January 2005

AORN Journal (Association of periOperative Registered Nurses), March 2005, Vol. 81, No. 3, pp. 603-606

OR Nursing Supervisor

Health Magazine (upcoming)

US News and World Report, August 1, 2005