Safety

PREPARING FOR YOUR ANAESTHETIC

Preparing for your anaesthetic and medical procedure should start early ! You can start to make plans around the following areas

Exercise

In general the fitter you are the better your body will cope with the demands of the anaesthetic and procedure. Try to increase your level of activity in the weeks prior to your anaesthetic. If you are planning a hip replacement this may be difficult or impossible but in many instances it is possible to do a bit more exercise which will help.

Managing other medical conditions

Other medical conditions should be under good control prior to a planned medical or surgical procedure. This includes high blood pressure, asthma and diabetes to name a few common conditions.

Smoking

Everyone knows that smoking is not good for one’s health – that it causes cancer and chronic lung conditions. However it is also bad in the short term around the time of operations. Quitting a few weeks prior to your anaesthetic will allow your lungs to recover and help your breathing during your operation. It will also increase the levels of oxygen in your blood and improve wound healing. Remember also that hospitals are non-smoking establishments ! Nicotine patches can be used during your hospital stay.

Teeth

If you have loose teeth you are advised to see your dentist prior toyour anaesthetic.

Starvation

Experts disagree about the optimum time for starvation prior to elective surgery under anaesthesia. Please read these guidelines carefully prior to a general or regional (spinal/epidural) anaesthetic. Follow them and discuss with your anaesthetist in advance or at their pre-operative visit to clarify plans for your procedure. There is very strong evidence that over-long starvation has a deleterious effect on recovery after surgery. At all times our intention is to give you the highest quality care.

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