Tuesday, March 14, 2017
Can you stand another post on my upcoming surgery?
The American Society of Anesthesiologists encourages you (me?) to take some steps before the "big day."
In my case, this means seeing a cardiologist (my ninth in AZ) because I have atrial fibrillation, a rhythm disorder suffered by 20% of people.
So they want to be on the safe side there, I guess, even though I don't want to tangle with another cardiologist--the two ways of treating my thing backfired on me big time and the other two ways don't last, from what I have heard. So I am not treating this, except for a mild blood thinner--aspirin,
They hate that.
Anyhow, that is one piece of advice--possible pre-op specialist visits.
--Find out who will be administering the anesthesia. They are physicians at the Society so they recommend you insist on a physician-anesthesiologist not a nurse-anesthetist. We could get into that, but not here. Physician-anesthesiologists have 12-14 years of medical ed and 12,000 to 16,00 hours of clinical training. They work with your surgeon and other members of your care team to manage you while unconscious and your pain afterward.
--Talk with this person. You need to provide detailed info on your meds (including over-the-counter, vitamins, supps), chronic issues, diseases and ailments, allergies, recreational drugs, and so on. I have found--and it just happened with my daughter's gallbladder operation, that this conversation is sketchy and takes place right before the surgery and often after you get some "soothing" medication.
--Detail your previous experience with anesthesia. Will this person want to know that the guy who numbed my eye for one of my four detached retina surgeries did it wrong and I felt the first cut--yow--followed by bam! I was out for 10 mins of more numbing then back awake? Will I sound fearful, disrespectful? Probably won't get into this--since my operation this time is not under a local.
--Tell this person your fears. Yeah, OK. I have fears.
--Ask questions. Hmmm...I would ask my odds on waking up...but I had odds on my eye that were not too meaningful, so maybe not.
--Ask about afterward. This means pain control. I will be in the hospital, I am told--this is not in-and-out surgery for me.
So--typing this has freaked me out--but that is my role. I get this stuff so you don't have to.