Anesthesiology

Types of Anesthesia

You and your anesthesiologist will discuss your options for anesthesia before your surgery. Many procedures require a specific type of anesthesia, but there are some situations where you may be able to choose. Your anesthesiologist may feel strongly about one option over another based on your safety and comfort, as well as other circumstances unique to your situation. Your anesthesiologist will discuss the risks and benefits of the options that are available to you. At the end of your procedure, you will be taken to the Recovery Area, where you will be monitored until it is safe to allow you to be discharged or transferred to your hospital room.

The CareMount Anesthesiology team takes pride in providing excellent, state of the art, evidence driven and patient focused care. Our anesthesia providers will ensure your safety and comfort before, during, and after your surgery.

Types of Anesthesia

General Anesthesia

Many major operations are performed under general anesthesia. This means that the patient will be unconscious and have no awareness of the surgical procedure or other sensations with a combination of inhaled and intravenous medications. The medications will be individualized to the patient based on age, weight, medical conditions, and the type of surgery.   Safety, comfort, and a quick recovery from anesthesia are a top priority.

Under general anesthesia patients often, although not always, require assistance with breathing with a breathing tube or similar device during the surgery.

Monitored Anesthesia Care

Depending on the surgery, a deep anesthetic may not be necessary. Monitored Anesthesia Care (MAC) is a technique which involves providing sedation while closely monitoring the patient’s vital signs and comfort level. The anesthesia team uses pain relievers and sedatives to induce an altered state of consciousness that minimizes pain and discomfort.

The depth of sedation required varies with the invasiveness of the procedure, the patient’s preference, and the patient’s medical issues.

Regional Anesthesia – There are two types of Regional Anesthetics:
  1. Peripheral Nerve Blocks

    Peripheral nerve blocks are a type of regional anesthesia that involves injection of anesthetic medications near a cluster of nerves so that only the area of your body that requires surgery will be numb. Our anesthesia team includes anesthesiologists with subspecialty training in Regional Anesthesia and Acute Pain Management. Our regional anesthesia team is highly experienced in using the latest ultrasound guidance techniques for accuracy and safety.

    These injections provide comfort for up to 24 hours. For major surgery requiring overnight hospitalization, we can also insert a very thin catheter alongside a cluster of nerves to provide several days of pain control.  Peripheral nerve blocks provide excellent postoperative pain relief for shoulder surgery, knee surgery, ankle surgery, wrist surgery, arm surgery, and hand surgery.

  2. Neuraxial Anesthesia (Spinals and Epidurals)

    Neuraxial anesthesia is a type of regional anesthesia that involves injection of anesthetic medication in the fatty tissue that surrounds the nerve roots as they exist in the spine (also known as an epidural) or into the cerebrospinal fluid which surrounds the spinal cord (also known as a spinal). This numbs the patient from the abdomen to the toes and often eliminates the need for general anesthesia.  Sometimes, a small plastic tube is left in place so that medication can be given continually for an extended period. Neuraxial anesthesia can be used as the primary anesthetic and/or for postoperative pain relief for surgery of the lower extremities (feet, legs, and hips), pelvis, upper and lower abdomen, and lung.

Pediatric Anesthesia

The CareMount Medical pediatric anesthesia team is comprised of anesthesiologists with subspecialty training in Pediatric Anesthesiology. Medical procedures on a child may create a great deal of anxiety for both the child and parents. We tailor the anesthesia for each child based on medical conditions, developmental level, and the type of procedure needed.

Before introducing the child to the operating room, we usually give the child a liquid medication to ease anxiety about being in an unfamiliar environment. For younger children, we often do not place an IV preoperatively, but rather have the child go to sleep by inhaling anesthesia gases though a pleasantly-scented mask. This typically minimizes anxiety for both patient and parents. Vitals signs including heart rhythm, breathing pattern, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels, anesthesia gas levels, and blood pressure are continuously monitored throughout the anesthetic. The nurses providing care before, during, and after surgery are experienced in keeping children safe and comfortable. Modern anesthesia for children has become very safe as technology, equipment, methods and training have become quite advanced.