The anesthetic experience itself is unique for a child and proper rapport between the child, anesthesiologist and family is crucial for success. Your child's apprehension and ability to cooperate are of particular concern to us. Parent's anxieties concerning their child's anesthesia and surgery may be severe enough to be transmitted to the child. The goal is to have calm parents and calm children.
Q: Does my child need to fast before surgery?
A: Every patient requiring anesthesia needs to fast. This is to prevent vomiting under anesthesia and subsequent aspiration of food into the lungs, causing potentially dangerous complications. Please strictly follow the pre-operative instruction given to you regarding the duration of fasting.
Q: How does my child go to sleep?
A: The age and maturity of the child, medical condition and whether it is an elective or emergency procedure will determine how your child goes to sleep. Young children are asked to breathe from a flavored mask (bubble gum, strawberry, root beer, grape etc) and they drift off to sleep in a few minutes. After they are asleep, an IV will be placed, if needed, to give fluids and medications. Older children will have an IV placed first and will go off to sleep with medication given through the IV.
Q: Are there risks with anesthesia in children?
A: There is always some risk with anesthesia in children, as well as adults. Anesthetic requirements for children are different than for adults. Your child will be monitored throughout the procedure with standard monitors by an anesthesiologist to ensure his or her safety.
Q: How soon will my child wake up?
A: Your child should wake up shortly after the procedure and will be transported to the recovery room. Your child will be continuously monitored there until fully aware, alert and comfortable; ie, free of pain and nausea.
Q: Is my child going to hurt when waking up from anesthesia?
A: Your child will receive pain medication during the procedure based on age, weight and the type of procedure. This will ensure a more comfortable wake-up. Additional pain medication in the recovery room will be administered if needed.