All About Anesthesia
There are three main types of anesthesia in use today. The types are local, regional and general. Each one has its advantages and disadvantages over other types. However, certain types of surgery performed by your physician in Toronto and at Toronto Cosmetic Clinic will require the use of a particular type. There are other considerations, aside from the cosmetic procedure involved. They mainly have to do with the particular individual receiving the anesthetic. Such variables can include the individual's general health, age, gender and any particular medical condition that the person may have.
The difference in the type of anesthesia employed is primarily based upon the area of the body that has been targeted to be affected. What each type has in common, though, is their goal: a cessation of feeling. This feeling is one of any pain that could be felt due to the nature of the cosmetic procedure.
Before & After General Anesthesia
Preparing for Surgery
Take some time to plan how your surgery will fit into your life. Scheduling it during a very busy time that imposes additional stress is not a good idea. Remember, general anesthesia has an effect on your body afterward and while the effects will gradually disappear, you may want to schedule your surgery at a time when work is not as busy.
- You should plan to be in the best shape possible for your operation because your recovery will depend, at least partially, on how healthy you are. If you feel that you are coming down with a cold or flu near the date of your surgery, make sure to contact us. We want to make sure you are fit enough to undergo surgery, for your own safety.
- Reduce your alcohol intake for two to three weeks before and give the sauce up completely a week before you go under the knife. Most important here is that if you find you do not stop drinking beforehand, than at least you should be honest with your doctor about the amount you drink.
- Smoking is especially bad if your surgery includes a general anesthetic. It can inhibit healing on several levels, especially after a facelift, abdominoplasty, or other cosmetic procedures where the creation of a skin flap is necessary. Smoking reduces blood flow, and the carbon monoxide greatly reduces the ability of the blood to transport oxygen necessary for healing. It is recommended you stop smoking three weeks before surgery. That gives you time to get over that hard cough people get when they first stop.
- There are also several common drugs you should avoid, which is why you should tell your surgeon about any drugs you are taking. Avoid taking anything with acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), more commonly known as Aspirin®, at least ten days before surgery. ASA slows the blood's ability to clot, which can cause excessive bleeding during surgery and slow down the healing process.
- Some vitamins and herbal remedies can have adverse effects on the body during surgery and while you recover, including affecting the ability of the blood to clot and the rate of bruising and swelling. As a result, vitamins and products that are designated as herbal remedies or medicines should be avoided for 10 days prior to your surgery.
- Surgery requiring the administration of general anesthesia by an anesthesiologist necessitates additional preparation. Restricting the intake of food and liquids will be required. Generally, no food or liquids can be eaten 8 hours prior to surgery.
You will speak briefly with an anesthetist before surgery. Anesthetists are highly trained medical professionals who have completed both a four-year medical degree and a five-year training program. The anesthetist will determine your fitness level, review your past history (if any) with general anesthetic, and find out if you are allergic to any of the drugs you might be given.
Side Effects after your Surgery
Most patients wake up after surgery with a sore throat. You'll most likely feel cold since a general anesthetic dilates the blood vessels in your skin, leading to heat loss. It is common for patients to feel sick or nauseous. You will be given a beverage to ease nausea. It may take up to a week of rest at home before your system is totally cleared of the effects of a general anesthetic.
Do not try to do too much too quickly right away when you return home - plan to have someone help look after the children or do some of the cooking and cleaning for you. A reliable helper will be able to assist you in preparing food, going to the bathroom or taking a shower. This is vital to facilitate recovery from invasive surgery, such as Breast Augmentation, Liposuction or Rhinoplasty, and prevent accidents from happening while you're still feeling woozy.
Types of Anesthesia
A general anesthetic generally induces the temporary loss of consciousness, e.g. a deep sleep. The individual is unaware of anything, including any sensation of pain and memory. This is the most common form of anesthesia used in any major invasive cosmetic surgery. An example of a typical procedure that requires general anesthesia is a full tummy tuck.
The anesthesia may be administered by a gas which is breathed in and/or an intravenous fluid drip, i.e. and IV.
The individual will also usually have some type of breathing apparatus inserted into the mouth. This is to ensure that they will continue to breathe properly, even while unconscious.
Regional : Spinal and Epidural Anesthetic
Unlike the general type, a regional anesthesia does not cause any temporary loss of consciousness. Only a particular region of the body will be without sensation, as nerve impulses to the area are blocked. In this way, a cosmetic procedure can be performed by your physician in Toronto without encountering any of the potential risks involved with a general anesthetic.
The two most well-known kinds of regional anesthesia are the spinal anesthetic and epidural anesthetic.
Both kinds are usually used for the pelvic, lower abdominal area and/or lower extremities. The difference between them is based on where the anesthesia is injected.
For the spinal anesthetic, the anesthesia is injected into the spinal canal - namely, the fluid surrounding the spinal cord in the lower back. It also differs from the latter kind, as it has a greater impact on movement.
For the epidural anesthetic, the anesthesia is administered via a catheter - a small, thin tube - inserted into the "epidural space" of the spinal column in the lower back.
A local anesthesia is much like a further refinement of the regional type. In this case, only a targeted area of the body is subject to the anesthetic, administered under the skin. Usually, only a simple injection into the targeted area is required, with no loss of consciousness.
Apparently, this is the most common form of anesthetic used in cases of very minor cosmetic surgery. It also may be favoured should the risks of a regional anesthetic outweigh its benefits.
The selection of which type of anesthesia administered by your physician at Toronto Cosmetic Clinic will depend a great deal upon the cosmetic procedure to be performed as well as the health and medical history of the individual patient.
If you have more questions regarding anesthesia, don’t hesitate to contact us at 416-221-5554.