Before your procedure
Our team of dedicated anaesthetists and specialist nurses work as part of the perioperative team to ensure that you are fit for operation with a thorough pre-assessment prior to the surgery to evaluate all your medical conditions. This allows the anaesthetist to create a plan for anaesthesia and for the various needs of the patient before the surgery and so that the team can provide the right anaesthetic care during your operation.
During your procedure
During your procedure the anaesthetics team strictly follow The Royal College of Anaesthetists patient safety guidelines to ensure they are delivering the very best care. The effects of anaesthesia are then reversed after the surgery ends and you will be moved to a recovery room once you are awake and comfortable.
We have modern and upgraded digital anaesthesia work stations, general anaesthesia and regional anaesthesia techniques (ultrasound guided) and patient controlled analgesia (PCA). We also provide acute and chronic pain services, giving advice on pain management after your operation. This includes pain and regional blocks with and without catheters, which help to combat a patients pain level, whilst reducing our carbon footprint as no anaesthetic gases would be involved.
Anaesthetics also provide 24-hour resuscitation and critical care services for potentially life-threatening situations.
Types of anaesthesia
Anaesthesia is used so that you don’t feel pain. It can be given in different ways and does not always make you unconscious.
There are three main types of anaesthesia, local, regional and general:
- Local anaesthesia: involves numbing a small area in a specific area of the body while the patient is alert, awake and conscious. It is routinely used for very small procedures like stitch or mole removal.
- Regional anaesthesia: an injection is administered which numbs a full part of the body like arm, legs or abdomen. The patient stays conscious and aware of their surroundings. Regional anaesthesia is routinely used during childbirth, labour epidural injection, shoulder and knee replacement. There is minimal environmental pollution as no gases are involved.
- General anaesthesia: involves providing anaesthetic drugs through an intravenous cannula and ensuring complete unconsciousness with/without muscle relaxation. It blocks pain in the entire body and is essential for some operations like abdominal surgery and open heart surgeries.
- Monitored sedation: anaesthetic drugs are administered through an intravenous cannula, which will make a patient sleepy. The sedation can range from slight drowsiness to complete unconsciousness. This type of anaesthesia is used for minimally invasive procedures like steroid injection and colonoscopy’s.
Your anaesthetist will discuss the different types of anaesthesia to help you to make a choice.
What to expect after surgery
After you have had your operation, the anaesthetic will be stopped and you will gradually wake up.
You will usually be placed into a recovery room and then transferred to a ward. We do carry out many milder anaesthetic procedures where you would not be unconscious and likely to be able to be a hospital day patient – being allowed to leave the day of the operation provided you had support at home for the following 24 hours.
What are the side effects?
General anaesthetics has some common side effects which include:
- Feeling sick
- Feeling cold
- Body aches
- Sore throat
- General soreness
These are temporary side effects and should not last longer than a few days. Many people won’t experience any side effects at all.
Our experienced team will explain more about this before and after your procedure.