Your anaesthetist has undergone specialist training in anaesthesia, pain control, resuscitation and managing medical emergencies. Their job will be to look after you during your anaesthetic and during the initial phase of your recovery. They type of anaesthetic that you will require depends on your health and the nature and duration of the surgery.
- General Anaesthesia – Drugs are given to produce a state of unconsciousness so that you will be asleep during your surgery
- Regional Anaesthesia – This is where needles are used to numb the part of your body which is to be operated on. Spinal and epidural anaesthetics are examples where injections into the back can numb the nerves to the legs and abdomen.
- Sedation Anaesthesia – Drugs are used to alter your conscious state so that you are not aware of uncomfortable procedures. Sedation is often used in gastroscopy, colonoscopy and small surgical procedures.
It is important that you tell your anaesthetist:
- If you have had adverse reactions to medications or pills
- What medications you are taking at present
- Any history of major medical problems
- About any broken teeth, caps or crowns
- If you are a current smoker
A nurse from the admissions department of the hospital where your surgery will take place will contact you just prior to your booked procedure. They will discuss your medical history, medications, how long you need to fast and what your admission time will be to the hospital.
You will have a consultation with your anaesthetist prior to your procedure where you will be able to discuss any questions or concerns you have regarding your anaesthetic.
If you are having day surgery an adult should accompany you home and stay with you for the first night post op. Do not drive a vehicle, make important decisions, use dangerous equipment, sign any legal documents or drink alcohol for at least 24 hours.
For further information on anaesthesia for your procedure, please peruse the following links. This information is provided by the Australian Society of Anaesthetists.
- Anaesthesia and bariatric surgery >
- Anaesthesia for children >
- Anaesthesia for major joint replacement surgery >
- Anaesthesia for gastrointestinal endoscopy >
- Epidural and spinal anaesthesia and analgesia >
- Epidural anaesthesia during labour >
- Anaesthesia for cataract surgery and other eye operations >
- Anaesthesia for oral surgery >
- Breastfeeding after anaesthesia >
allaboutanaesthesia.com.au is a comprehensive website prepared by the Australian Society of Anaesthetists which provides information for patients on anaesthesia and anaesthetics.
ombudsman.gov.au - The Commonwealth Ombudsman protects the interests of private health insurance consumers. They carry out this role in many ways. For more information please visit their website.
privatehealth.gov.au - This web site is an Australian Government initiative, managed by the office of the Private Health Insurance Ombudsman. PrivateHealth.gov.au also provides a wealth of background material on private health insurance private health insurance in Australia, a list of every registered health fund in Australia, the ability to search for health insurance policies and compare what is covered in each policy you have chosen.