Preparing for surgery is essential to your safety and recovery. Our Pre-Admission Testing (PAT) staff, including a member of our anesthetic care team, will carefully review your medical records. We will review your preoperative clinic visits, diagnostic tests, laboratory data, and evaluations by other medical professionals. It is important that your medical problems are managed as well as possible before surgery.
We understand that the time around surgery can be stressful. We want to prepare you for this by alleviating some of your anxiety. Listening to your descriptions of your health, past experiences, and concerns help us customize and tailor your anesthetic plan. Your physical exam will be focused and include a visual inspection of your mouth and throat. This is a painless assessment that helps us develop a plan for your breathing during the surgery.
We will discuss the risks and benefits of different types of anesthesia for your surgery and share our recommendations. You will have the opportunity to ask us questions and express requests.
There are many ways to deliver anesthesia. Categorically, these are divided into three groups: monitored anesthesia care (that usually involves sedation through the IV), general anesthesia, and local anesthetic-based techniques called spinal or epidural anesthesia. General anesthesia is the most common kind of anesthesia, but there are many procedures and surgeries that can be performed with sedation.
Surgeries that use a laparoscopic approach or require challenging positioning are usually performed under general anesthesia. Joint-replacement surgery can be performed under general or spinal anesthesia, but there is a clear preference for the latter for most patients.
Your surgeon may make specific requests regarding the type of anesthesia. For example, your surgeon may ask that we provide general anesthesia rather than sedation through your IV. This may be based upon the need for more control of the operating conditions. Your anesthetic plan will be shaped according to these requests, your input and requests, and our assessment.