Detroit, MI – After booking your cosmetic surgery procedure with your board-certified doctor, you’re probably feeling apprehensive and excited. After all, the body you’ve always dreamed of is on its way! However, you might be particularly nervous about the idea of “going under” with general anesthesia.
You’re Not Alone
According to psychiatric research, nearly one in three people fear general anesthesia more than the surgical procedure itself. Approximately 55% of those undergoing surgery are worried about general anesthesia. And it’s natural to be nervous; after all, you will be unconscious while undergoing surgery.
The Good News
Complications with anesthesia have dropped more than half from 2010-2013, and mortality rates of anesthesia remain low: about 0.03% of all surgeries. The risk of passing away during or shortly after undergoing surgery is now one–tenth of what it was just in the past 50 years. These numbers all take into account people who were in poor health to begin with, as well as those who’d had surgeries done in emergency situations.
“If you’re approved for cosmetic surgery,” notes award winning plastic surgeon Dr. Ali, “chances are you’re in good health already. This greatly improves your chances of a favorable outcome.”
How to Prepare
It’s important that you properly prepare for your surgery –and general anesthesia—to avoid unnecessary complications. Your doctor will decide which type of anesthesia is right for you, based on your current and past health, relevant test results, and the type of surgery being performed.
Be sure to tell your doctor all medications you’re taking, including herbal supplements or remedies. Many of these can interact with anesthesia medications, so it’s crucial that you’re honest with your doctor.
If you take any ongoing medications, such as those for diabetes or blood pressure, ask your doctor or nurse about changes you may need to make the day of the surgery.
You’ll likely need to fast for six hours or more before the surgery to make sure the anesthesia has the desired effect.
Finally, be sure to prepare a ride home for yourself. You’ll need someone to drive you back after your surgery, so it’s best to get that figured out beforehand.
What to Expect
You’ll meet your anesthesia specialist, who will ensure your comfort and be responsible for your safety. This person will constantly monitor your vital signs (heart rate, breathing, blood pressure) before, during, and after the surgery, and will also continuously check the levels of anesthesia you’re given. If there are any issues during the surgery, this person will correct them by giving additional fluids or medications.
Some anesthesia medications are given intravenously (IV) or inhaled through a mask. If you’re curious, feel free to ask your doctor during your pre-op consultation.
A top priority during your time under anesthesia is your airway. As methods of keeping your airway open vary, you may want to ask your doctor how this will be done. It’s crucial that your body receive enough oxygen during the surgery.
You will be free of pain, consciousness, movement, and memory during the time you’re under general anesthesia. Many people describe their experience as a “time warp,” where they aren’t sure how much time has passed when they wake up after surgery.
How quickly you wake up afterward depends on multiple factors: the anesthetics and other medications used, how you responded to them, and what amounts were given.
After the Surgery
After your surgery, you will go to a recovery room where you’ll continue to be monitored. Your vital signs and bandages will be checked, and you’ll be asked how you’re feeling. If you experience any pain, be sure to tell your medical team so they can help you.
There may be some side effects of anesthesia, which can last for several hours after surgery. Some common effects are:
- Changes in muscle control
- Altered coordination
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Dry mouth
- Sore throat/mild hoarseness
- Feeling cold and/or shivering when you first wake up
Depending on what type of procedure(s) you had done, you will either be able to go home the same day or will stay in a hospital to continue your recovery. If you need to stay, your doctor and/or nurse will visit you to see how you’re doing and whether you have any more questions.
If you’re curious about what general anesthesia entails, please talk about it during your consultation with award-winning Detroit area plastic surgeon Dr. Ali. You may also contact Amae Plastic Surgery Center at 855.335.7200, or email email@example.com.
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