During any type of anesthesia, the anesthesia provider is in continuous attendance, and you are continuously monitored with specialized equipment in order to detect any problems and ensure that your anesthetic course goes smoothly and safely.
Under general anesthesia, anesthetic drugs are administered intravenously (IV) or through a breathing mask or tube. You are unconscious and not aware of the surgery or your surroundings.
With regional anesthesia, the anesthesiologist injects medication around a nerve area that affects only a specific portion of your body. You may remain awake during the procedure or the anesthesiologist may give you a sedative.
Local, with Monitoring
With this approach, your surgeon or anesthesiologist injects a local anesthetic into your skin and tissues to numb a specific area for a procedure. In addition, sedation may also be given to allay anxiety and provide great comfort.
Nerve Blocks for Pain Relief
Regional nerve blocks provide effective pain relief of the surgical area for the first 6-14 hours following surgery. If you are a candidate for a regional nerve block, your anesthesiologist may offer you this service. Patients receiving a nerve block are first given a sedative, and a local anesthetic is then injected near the nerves that go to the surgical area. After you receive the block, you may be given general anesthesia for the surgery. Upon awakening, the surgical area should be numb and the pain minimal.