Anesthesia is the practice of controlling pain during a surgical or diagnostic procedure by using medicine which makes the patient insensible to pain. The procedure encompasses unconsciousness, muscle relaxation, and absence of pain to make the operative procedures and postoperative care comfortable for the patient. Anesthesia for pain management consists of the use of medicine to numb or reduce sensitivity to acute or chronic pain to reduce the patient’s discomfort.
What are the types of anesthesia?
Anesthesiologists specialize in managing specific types of pain like the pain in childbirth and chronic pain. Anesthetists also undergo advanced training in monitoring and treating changes in critical life functions during surgery including breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure. They diagnose and treat any post-operative pain for surgical procedures including orthopedic, gynecologic, urologic, general and thoracic procedures.
The anesthesiologist will assess your medical condition before the surgery to determine the most appropriate type of anesthesia based on your medical history, lifestyle and personal preference. The different types of anesthesia include:
Local anesthesia is administered temporarily to numb a particular area of the body for a minor procedure. An anesthetic agent is injected directly into the site to stop the sensation of pain. You may remain conscious during the procedure.
Regional anesthesia is similar to local anesthesia, but it blocks pain to a more significant or more profound part of your body. The anesthetic agent targets specific nerves that provide sensation to that portion of the body. There are several types of regional anesthesia:
- Spinal anesthetic-A single dose of anesthetic medicine is injected into the area near the spinal cord to cause numbness in the lower region of the body. It is used for the lower abdominal, hips, and legs.
- Epidural anesthetic-Similar to a spinal anesthetic, epidural anesthesia is administered into the lower spine to cause numbness to the lower half of the body. It is continually infused through a tube placed into the area surrounding the spinal cord. It is often used for labor and childbirth.
General anesthesia is delivered intravenously or through a breathing mask or a tube to induce unconsciousness during a surgical procedure.
Types of Anesthesia services
- Surgical Anesthesia: it is administered for surgical procedures both elective and emergency surgeries including ENT, oral surgery, urology, orthopedic, plastic surgery and many others. Anesthesia is also used for diagnostic procedures performed in surgery and other areas.
- Pain Control after Surgery: Anesthesia for pain management is administered to minimize post-surgery discomfort and to manage acute pain from injury and acute conditions to improve the patients’ quality of life.
- Obstetrics Anesthesia: Anesthesia for pain management is administered to laboring patients to provide pain relief during labor or for Cesarean Sections (C-section).