Prepare For Your Procedure And Know What To Expect
Understanding your anesthetic care can seem daunting at first. Visurraga Enterprises LLC. and our anesthesia providers work closely together with your physician and surgeon to make your surgical experience as positive as possible.
**Please note that this information is for educational purposes only. Specific medical care should always be determined with a medical professional.
Before My Surgery
What is the difference between Hospital and Ambulatory Surgery?
Ambulatory surgery, commonly referred to as outpatient or same day surgery, allows a patient to immediately return home to recover from their procedure. Avoiding the overnight stay in the hospital is beneficial to the patient and the healthcare system as a whole. Patients return to a comfortable and familiar environment where they can focus on healing. Quite often, the activity and unfamiliar surroundings of a hospital make it difficult to get the proper amount of rest that you need to insure a quick and speedy recovery. Ambulatory surgery is also quite beneficial to the nation’s healthcare system, as it allows surgical procedures to be performed more efficiently and with lower costs to insurance companies and patients. The most common surgical procedures are routinely performed in ambulatory surgery centers, and as technology improves the list of available surgeries continues to grow.
What are common risks of anesthesia?
First, let us say that anesthesia is very safe. In fact, the field of anesthesiology has grown to be one of the most reliable parts of any operation. However, that does not mean that there aren’t any risks. Here are some common risks of anesthesia:
Postoperative delirium – The confusion and temporary memory loss that sometimes follows the administration of general anesthesia.
Nausea – After coming back to consciousness after general anesthesia, patients may feel nauseous.
Sore throat and harshness of voice – This is likely to occur after undergoing general anesthesia, where a patient needs the assistance of a breathing tube to breathe.
Death or serious injury are very rare and are usually related to complications from the surgery rather than solely anesthesia.
What if I am pregnant?
The anesthesia administered during a procedure for a patient who is pregnant is different than for a regular patient. There are a number of different factors and concerns that the anesthesia provider must be aware of that affect the patient and her unborn child. Some of these factors include, but are not limited to, preventing unwanted drugs effects on the fetus, optimizing and maintaining regular maternal physiological functions, and avoiding awareness if general anesthesia is used. In order to help assure the procedure will not have any negative side effects on the mother or the fetus, it may be beneficial to have an anesthesia provider with a specialty in pediatric anesthesiology or consultation with a neonatologist (high risk pediatrician).
What is informed consent?
Informed consent is the process where the anesthesia provider discloses information regarding the procedure to a patient so that they may make a voluntary choice whether to accept or refuse treatment.
Can I request the specific type of anesthesia that I want?
In certain situations, it is possible for the patient to request a specific type of anesthesia. In many procedures, there are a number of different anesthesia paths that the anesthesia provider can choose to take. A discussion between your surgeon and the anesthesia provider about the type of anesthesia needed for your specific surgery to ensure the safest anesthesia delivery method all the while keeping your request in mind.
When should I stop eating/drinking and why?
Typically for adults, you will need to stop eating/drinking eight hours prior to the administration of anesthesia. There may be exceptions to this rule, and your surgeon will give you detailed information prior to surgery about these guidelines. In addition, you may be asked to stop taking certain vitamins or herbal remedies for a certain amount of time before the procedure, as they may interfere with the anesthesia.
While this may be a hassle, doing so may save you from injury or complications during the surgery and anesthesia. This ‘no eating no drinking’ order mainly serves as a precautionary measure in order to prevent pulmonary aspiration. Pulmonary aspiration is where the stomach contents enter the lungs. This can potentially block airflow to the lungs and can put the patient at risk for pneumonia and other serious infections.
Do I have to have a breathing tube?
You will only need to have a breathing tube if you are undergoing a general anesthetic. This is because general anesthesia decreases your ability to breath on your own. If you are undergoing local, regional, or MAC anesthesia, you will not need a breathing tube. However, you will be given an oxygen mask to ensure you are getting enough oxygen.
What medications will I have to take? If you are taking blood pressure medications, notify our team. You can take most blood pressure medications the morning of surgery with a sip of water. However, there are some blood pressure medications that may need to be stopped prior to your procedure such as Lisinopril, or any blood pressure medication ending in -pril. You may continue to take your seizure, and reflux medications the morning of surgery with just a sip of water to wash it down. Many medications interfere with the anesthesia medications given during your surgery or procedure. It is imperative that you bring the names of all of your medicines with you to surgery. Anti-anxiety and pain medications must be discussed with your anesthesia provider. Most Diabetes medications should not be taken prior to surgery. These medications work in conjunction with your food intake to keep your blood sugars normal. Taking your diabetes medicine with no food may have drastic consequences for you during the day. Your surgeon may require you to take some medicine prior to or the morning of surgery. Detailed information about these medicines will be provided by your surgeon.