Welcome to our department we have a wide and varied outlook with experts in many fields:
- Critical Care
- Day Case Anaesthesia
- Paediatric Anaesthesia
- Obstetric Anaesthesia
- Chronic and Acute Pain Relief
- Difficult Airway Management
Frequently Asked Questions:
What does the Anaesthetist do?
Your Anaesthetist is a doctor who has specialised in the various forms of anaesthesia and many ways of relieving pain.
He or she will talk to you before the operation, will stay with you all through the operation, and will organise the relief of pain following the operation.
The Anaesthetist will discuss the type of operation with the Surgeon and choose the best form of anaesthetic for you.
Will I be seen before my operation?
An Anaesthetist will visit you before your operation to assess your general health and answer any questions that you may have. This will usually be on the ward in the late afternoon, if you have been admitted the day before surgery, or just before theatre, if you are admitted on the day of operation.
What sort of Anaesthetic will I have?
The Anaesthetist will discuss with you the types of anaesthetic which are suitable for your operation. Most surgery is carried out under a general anaesthetic, which means that the patient is unconscious throughout the operation.
Just before the operation, if you are having a general anaesthetic, you will be taken to a room next to the operating theatre. The Anaesthetist will usually give you an injection which will make you fall asleep quickly and calmly.
On some occasions, there may be special reasons for sending a patient to sleep by asking him or her to breathe through a mask With modern anaesthetics, this can be done easily and pleasantly.
An increasing number of operations are nowadays performed under regional anaesthesia (for example, spinal or epidural anaesthesia). This means that the site of the operation is numbed by local anaesthesia. You may remain awake but if you wish you can be made sleepy so that you are less aware of what is going on.
What will the Anaesthetist ask me?
He or she will ask questions about your general health. particularly about any long-standing problems and also about temporary complaints such as colds (you may need extra treatment to make you as fit as possible for your operation, and sometimes this causes a delay.)
Some of the questions he/she may ask you are:-
- Have you been in hospital before?
- Have you had an anaesthetic before?
- Were there any problems with the anaesthetic?
- Have any of your close family had any problems with anaesthetics? (Some problems can run in families)
- Do you take any drugs or medicines?
- Have you had any allergic reactions?
- Do you smoke or drink? (You should try to stop smoking and reduce your alcohol intake before an operation)
- Do you have any dentures, caps, crowns or loose teeth? (These are more liable to damage during anaesthesia)
- Is your neck stiff, or do you have any difficulty opening your mouth?
What does “Nil by mouth” mean?
Being sick during an anaesthetic can be dangerous. It is much less likely if your stomach is empty. The nurses will let you know when to stop eating or drinking. Usually NO FOOD for 6 hours and NO DRINKS for 3 hours before the start of your operation. You will be able to continue to take prescribed medicines.
If you eat or drink too near the time of your operation it may be cancelled.
What happens after I have gone to sleep?
The anaesthetist will care for you during the operation. He or she will be there to give you drugs to keep you asleep and ensure that the surgeon has the best and safest conditions under which to work. The anaesthetist will also monitor your heart and breathing and give you fluids, blood and other treatment that may be necessary.
What happens after the operation?
You will wake up at the end of the operation and go to the recovery room where specially trained nurses will look after you until it is safe for you to return to the ward.
Will it be very painful after the operation?
With modern drugs and pain control methods it not necessary to suffer severe pain. Our hospitals use many different pain relief methods.