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Crohn's Disease Forum » Surgery » What kind of problems matter to anaesthetists?


01-16-2013, 01:25 PM   #1
UnXmas
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What kind of problems matter to anaesthetists?

I'm supposed to have minor rectal surgery soon. I had my pre-op assessment this week and it all seemed fine. But today I got a call from the nurse who assessed me and she said that the anaesthetist had had a clinic today where their pre-op patients were reviewed and now needs to see me for an appointment. I've had a few surgeries before and never had this happen.

The nurse didn't tell me what the problem is, and I assumed it wasn't worth asking since they usually only like to speak to you in person - hence making an appointment. But now I can't stop wondering about it. I am very underweight and that's the main thing I can think of - that they want me to gain weight before the operation. But wouldn't she have said that to me at the pre-op? We did discuss my weight but the nurse didn't say then that it would interfere with the operation. Or is low weight something the anaesthetist would pick up on when the pre-op nurse didn't?

Has anyone had this happen and what sort of problems do anaesthetists detect when reviewing pre-op patients? The nurse didn't say the surgery is off or anything but now I've got a fortnight of not knowing if the surgery's going to happen or what I'm going to be confronted with at this appointment with the anaesthetist.

I realise no one here can tell me the answer, but I would really like to know if anyone's had this happen or knows of the kind of things that an anaesthetist might need to discuss before a minor surgery.
01-16-2013, 02:29 PM   #2
DustyKat
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It is difficult to say because it is not unusual here for the anaesthetist to see you at pre op even for minor procedures.

If the only condition you have that may be of concern is your weight then it is likely that. Now it may not be a concern as such but just that the anaesthetist wants to get a better feel of what he is dealing with before the day of procedure. In other words...eyeball you.

Dusty. xxx
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01-16-2013, 02:31 PM   #3
lisakuney
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Dunno where you are, but I see an anesthetist or nurse/anesthetist every time I do a pre-op workup. We talk about my health history and they ask questions, and determine what if any diagnostic studies they would like to see done before the op, and we talk about what anesthesia options would be best for me and why.
01-16-2013, 11:17 PM   #4
ForeverCrohns
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Hello unxmas

It is normal for the anesthesiologist to see you prior surgery .. Before my surgery the scheduled an appointment and asked me questions to clear me for surgery and to be prepared for anything during surgery.

Hope it goes well with you ..
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01-16-2013, 11:46 PM   #5
Jennifer
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I always speak with the anesthesiologist before surgery. Its usually done the day of like a half hour before I have the surgery, never needed an appointment for it but who knows, maybe yours is super busy. They usually just inform you what's going to happen, what drug/s they're going to use, how they are going to monitor you, then ask you if you have any questions and answer them on the spot. Usually takes less than 10 minutes. I always have mine take a look at my IV to make sure its in properly cause I don't want to wake up during surgery or anything like that from a bad IV (you can have yours do that when you see them in the operating room though since you aren't seeing them right before surgery).
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01-17-2013, 04:53 AM   #6
UnXmas
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This is definitely not a routine appointment. I'm in the UK and you do see the anaethetist before surgery, but on the day of the surgery before you go in. This appointment is because of a "problem", as the nurse put it, which the anaethetist has to discuss with me. Pre-ops don't generally involve contact with the anaethetist for minor surgery - the pre-op nurse is the only person I was supposed see.

I'm on my fifth surgery now and that's always been the pattern (all my surgeries have been done at the same hospital with the same surgeon). This appointment is an extra that wasn't planned until the aneaesthetist saw my pre-op results.

They did take some blood and it might be that this happened when the results came back? Obviously when I left the pre-op the blood results were still pending. Last year my blood showed I was anemic so maybe it's something like that. The nurse also did an EKG at the pre-op but I thought the results to that were immediate and she didn't say there was any problem there.

It's just that they never call you or give you an extra appointment unless there's something wrong.

Last edited by UnXmas; 01-17-2013 at 05:12 AM.
01-17-2013, 05:18 AM   #7
xX_LittleMissValentine_Xx
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Maybe its something to do with your medication? A complete guess as I don't know what you are on, but it could be something like you need to not take something that could interfere with the anaesthetic which the nurse didn't pick up on.
Or like you say something in your blood results.
It does seem a bit strange, but try not to worry about it. I'm guessing if they want an appointment its something you can discuss and work out.
When is your surgery scheduled for?
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01-17-2013, 07:07 AM   #8
Catherine
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We only saw them just before the colonscopy, but they were concern about low body weigh, anaemia and low blood pressure.

We were told they going to need to use the drip to run fluids.

Sorry can't be of more help.
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01-17-2013, 07:12 AM   #9
Susan2
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Did you have any problems with the anaesthetics for previous surgeries? Were you unusually sick/vomitting afterwards?
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01-17-2013, 08:17 AM   #10
UnXmas
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Maybe its something to do with your medication? A complete guess as I don't know what you are on, but it could be something like you need to not take something that could interfere with the anaesthetic which the nurse didn't pick up on.
Or like you say something in your blood results.
It does seem a bit strange, but try not to worry about it. I'm guessing if they want an appointment its something you can discuss and work out.
When is your surgery scheduled for?
I discussed my meds with the pre-op nurse, though that's a good point actually because I've been on prednisone (they want to know everything taken within the last year). The pre-op nurse didn't say much about my meds to me but I did see her writing down a lot of information because I take a lot of meds - I gave her my repeat prescription slip plus a long list of all the over-the-counter meds I've bought. That could be making things a bit complicated!

I don't have a date for the surgery yet, but it will probably be in the next few months.

Did you have any problems with the anaesthetics for previous surgeries? Were you unusually sick/vomitting afterwards?
No. I had an infection after one, but that was the wound rather than the anaesthetic.

I'm trying to stop stressing over it. It's only two weeks and then I'll know any way. It's not like this surgery is going to cure me or anything, so it's no big deal if it's postponed or even called off. And I'm sure she would have told me on the phone if they'd found anything really wrong.

I think it's just the not knowing, and not knowing what will happen when I meet the aneathetist - I hate meeting any new doctor as I've had bad experiences in the past which have kind of given me a phobia of medical professionals! I really shouldn't assume the worst before I've even met him, but it's difficult sometimes. And this is also something I wasn't expecting since all my previous operations have been hassle-free.

Thanks for all the replies.
01-17-2013, 08:29 AM   #11
Susan2
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Try not to worry - you need to build up your strength for the surgery, even though it is only minor. And most of us spend too much time worrying over things thatwe can't do anything about.
01-17-2013, 01:28 PM   #12
ForeverCrohns
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I am sure they want to make sure it is safe for you to go under anesthesia .. Don't worry it is their job to make sure that everything is ok before surgery .. I think getting paranoid and have phobia from doctors comes with Crohn's!

Let us know how it goes!
01-29-2013, 02:38 PM   #13
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Well I'll soon be finding out. I have managed not to think about it for the last two weeks and feel ok about the appointment now. Thanks to everyone for making me see sense and stop worrying.
01-29-2013, 03:32 PM   #14
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When is your appointment? Maybe I missed it in earlier in the thread...
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01-30-2013, 06:10 AM   #15
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I had the appointment this morning. I'm so relieved! It was fine.

They'd taken blood at the pre-op and when the results came back they showed high white blood count and markers of inflammation and some minor deficiencies in nutrients. Bascially things that can all be explained by Crohn's, but their policy is to call in anyone who has abnormalities come up, and the aneathetist asked me questions to try to make sure my results weren't due to anything else - like some recent infection or other inflammatory process. Since I've had no symptoms of anything else, she easily concluded there was nothing else going on.

My mum had taken me to the appointment and was a bit annoyed we drove an hour to the hospital just to answer a few questions - not the most efficient use of NHS time either! - but I was just happy it wasn't anything else. And now I feel a bit stupid for expecting it to be lol.
01-30-2013, 06:14 AM   #16
Susan2
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That's great!. You must be happy that it was nothing to be concerned about. And it shows that the anaesthetist was being thorough.
01-30-2013, 07:30 AM   #17
xX_LittleMissValentine_Xx
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Yes, good news!
Don't worry about feeling silly, you will always expect the worst when they don't tell you anything.
But maybe next time you will know to try not to worry so much!
I don't see why you couldn't have spoken about that over the phone tbh!
x x
01-30-2013, 08:19 AM   #18
2thFairy
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Good deal!
01-30-2013, 02:11 PM   #19
UnXmas
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Yes, good news!
Don't worry about feeling silly, you will always expect the worst when they don't tell you anything.
But maybe next time you will know to try not to worry so much!
I don't see why you couldn't have spoken about that over the phone tbh!
x x

Yes the ease with which it could have been done over the phone was what my Mum was thinking! But appointments never seem to be done that way, except some GPs are offering phone appointments now. We do seem to go to quite a lot of appointments that just involve a quick conversation.
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