Anesthesiologists play a critical role before, during, and after surgery. At Maryland General, anesthesiology services are provided by Sheridan Healthcare
. All of our providers are board-certified physicians or nurse anesthetists.
- Administers medications designed to prevent patients from feeling sensations and pain during surgery
- Monitors and controls patients’ vital signs during surgery, including blood pressure, EKG, heart rate, breathing and oxygen levels
- Manages any pre-existing medical conditions and problems that may develop during surgery
Types of Anesthesia
There are various forms of anesthesia. The type of anesthesia used is based on several factors, including your physical condition, the type of surgery to be performed, your previous anesthesia history, your reactions to medications, your and your surgeon's preferences, and information provided during the preoperative interview. The different types of anesthesia include:
- Local Anesthesia. Local anesthesia is medicine given to temporarily stop the sense of pain in a particular area of the body. A patient remains conscious during a local anesthetic. For minor surgery, a local anesthetic can be administered via injection to the site.
- Regional Anesthesia. Regional anesthesia involves numbing only the portion of the body that will be operated on. Usually an injection of local anesthetic is given in the area of nerves that provide feeling to that part of the body. Types of regional anesthetics include spinal, epidural and brachial plexus.
- General Anesthesia. General anesthesia causes a patient to be unconscious during surgery. The medicine is either inhaled through a breathing mask or tube, or administered through an intravenous linea thin plastic tube inserted into a vein (usually in the patient's forearm).
What to Expect
The anesthesiologist will meet with the patient during a pre-operative interview. During this interview, the anesthesiologist becomes familiar with the patient's medical history and answers any questions. The anesthesiologist will also discuss the risks and benefits of the different anesthetic options in addition to any complications or side effects that can occur.
The anesthesiologist is in charge of a patient's life functions as the medical team performs the surgery. The anesthesiologist monitors the patient's vital signs, including, pulse, blood pressure, heart rate, body temperature, kidney function, respiratory rate, etc. Maryland General’s operating rooms are equipped with the most current anesthesia and monitoring equipment.
Once the surgery is complete, the anesthesiologist discontinues the anesthetic and the patient wakes up in the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU). The anesthesiologist continues to monitor the patient's vital signs to determines when the patient has recovered enough to leave the PACU.