Anesthesia and Patient Monitoring

Making sure our patients remain safe during surgery and other medical procedures is extremely important to us. Our team of veterinarians and veterinary technicians is skilled in using anesthesia and monitoring patients to ensure their safety and provide the most comfortable experience. Anesthesia and patient monitoring vary greatly from clinic to clinic. You can be confident that we use the most effective and up-to-date protocols. The type of anesthesia we use depends on the procedure. Some require general anesthesia, while others may only call for local anesthesia. We also closely monitor every procedure, regardless of whether it’s routine or more advanced. For more specific information on our protocols, please see the individual descriptions or contact us with any questions.

General Anesthesia

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Your Pet’s Anesthesia

                 Your Pet’s Safety and comfort on their day of surgery is of the utmost importance to us at the Deer-Grove Veterinary Clinic.  For this reason we have developed an anesthetic regimen that we feel will provide him/her with safety and comfort and you with the confidence that your pet’s stay with us will be as pleasant as possible.

               The first step is the pre-surgical exam, this will take place prior to your pet’s surgery day.  At this visit, we will perform a complete physical exam to ensure your pet is as healthy as possible for anesthesia.  A blood sample will be collected to check his/her organ systems to insure proper function and allow us to customize the anesthetic process as needed.  At this examination, we will review the required “Informed Consent” paperwork and “Estimate” for the procedure and answer any other questions you may have concerning your pet’s stay with us.

                The surgery day starts with admission to our clinic, this will occur between 7:30 and 8:00 AM unless advised otherwise.  Please understand that we may have several patients arriving for anesthetic procedures and you will be checked in according to order of arrival.

During admission, a technician will confirm all procedures to be completed and obtain a contact number for you in case of an emergency or if questions arise during surgery.  Please plan to be available by phone should such contact be necessary.  If any additional services are requested it will be necessary to make, review, and sign an amended estimate, these changes must be reviewed by one of our Doctors which may delay your check-in.  To ensure a quicker admission, please inform us in advance of any changes or additions needed.

Once admitted, your pet will receive a final pre-anesthetic exam by the doctor performing their procedure.  If there are any new concerns you will be contacted.  Then your pet will have an intravenous catheter placed; this will allow quick access to a vein during the procedure to administer medications and fluids as needed.  All surgery patients receive premedications prior to anesthesia.  These premedications include pain relievers, sedatives, and for some procedures antibiotics.  The specific medications will be determined by the age and health status of your pet.

After your pet is comfortably sedated they will undergo induction, this involves an injection of medication that will allow us to place an endotracheal tube which allows us to control their breathing.  When the endotracheal tube is in place it will be attached to an anesthetic machine that will supply your pet with oxygen and Sevoflorane gas.  Sevoflorane is the safest anesthetic gas available at this time and is the only anesthetic gas that is used at the Deer-Grove Veterinary Clinic.

While anesthetized, your pet will receive intravenous fluids in order to maintain proper blood flow and blood pressure.  They will be monitored by a certified technician for body temperature, blood pressure, oxygen content in their blood, respiration and heart rate.  Maintaining proper body temperature is very important to your pets comfort and speedy recovery from anesthesia.  We have a variety of warming devices to control your pet’s temperature both during anesthesia and also during recovery.

Pain medication will be determined by the type of surgery performed and your pet’s pain tolerance.  All patients will receive an NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug) unless specifically contraindicated.  For more extensive surgeries, they may receive an epidural injection of morphine, or patients needing more pain relief may be given a Constant Rate Infusion (CRI).  CRI involves a small constant rate of medications that will provide better control of pain with less total volume needed which enhances the safety of your pet.  For some procedures such as declaws, and oral surgery we will administer a local anesthetic that will provide greater comfort for a longer period of time after the procedure is complete.

After the procedure is completed, your pet will be moved to recovery.  Here they will receive surgery post-op care which includes continued monitoring for heart rate, body temperature, respiratory rate, and overall comfort.  More pain relief or other medications will be administered as needed.  You will be contacted by the surgery doctor after your pet is fully recovered and awake from anesthesia.  Your pet will continue to be monitored on a regular basis until he/she is discharged to you.

At discharge you will be given special instructions or information that may be needed for your pet’s care. Medications will be dispensed and instructions reviewed to ensure that your pet has the speediest recovery.