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Unread 01-01-2002, 09:04 PM

Heidi reminded me that BREATHING afterwards is VERY important. They gave me a neat little gadget to breathe in after my surgery. The more a person breathes deeply and then OUT, the sooner the medicine gets out (in a general). That's why we have medicinal breath after surgery.

I kept breathing into this thing every chance I remembered, telling myself that with every breath, I was getting more of the anesthesia out of me. And it worked!
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Unread 01-01-2002, 09:52 PM

I had an epidural during my tah/bso. I have had a general before and a spinal before. I personally would choose the spinal out of all of them.

For my tah/bso the epidural was okay. They gave me meds to put me into a twilight sleep part of the time, the rest of the time I was awake, but I don't remember it.

I liked the epi & spinal because I didn't barf afterwards like I did with the general.

Just my opinion. RobinS
Unread 01-01-2002, 11:41 PM

Hi, shegot,

When I discussed anesthesia options with my anesthesiologist, he pointed out that medical science has made great and positive strides during the last few years in this field. Some of the negative experiences that people talk about that happened with anesthesia years ago could probably be avoided these days, because there are newer anesthetic agents, antinausea meds, etc. So, the good news is, that whatever form of anesthesia you choose will probably work out fine for you.

I had a TVH. I am difficult to intubate, and I chose spinal anesthesia with sedation. The spinal catheter was placed AFTER the anesthesiologist had put me "out" with IV medication. I have no memory of the surgery. I woke up in the recovery room, numb from the knees down. The spinal catheter had been removed while I was still in LaLa Land, so I don't remember that, either. I itched from the type of morphine which is used in spinal anesthesia, and the nurse gave me IV benadryl, which stopped the itching. I quickly regained sensation in my feet and legs. By the time I got to my room on the floor, I was ready to walk. I had no headache, no nausea, and no sore throat. I did have a back ache, and the pain pump didn't help the back pain, but toradol took it away.

Spinal anesthesia with sedation was great, and I'd choose it again. Hope this information is helpful for you.

Good luck with your surgery,
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Unread 01-02-2002, 03:07 PM

I'll vote for a spinal. (They're all good, I just liked the spinal best.)

You can read every last detail of my experience with a spinal by clicking on the little "www" button at the bottom of my post.

Best of luck!
Unread 01-03-2002, 02:43 AM

Thanks to all of you. I know I have to make the decision myself and this seems to be the most difficult for me. I will will speak to the doctor again and the anesthesiologist.

Unread 01-03-2002, 04:51 AM
Spinal here

I had a spinal for tah/bso and I would do it again! I was suppose to have tvh but anantomy would not co-op. I had no drugs on board at all and everything was ok for first half of surgery. Having spinal I was aware of change in procedure right away, no surprises. I am into medical procedures so I was watching in the light, so cool!! I had promised the anethesiaologist that I would tell him if it got to be too much for me to handle. About half way through when they started messing with my intestines I got so sick to my stomach and my b.p. bottomed out cold sweet,dry heaves, no fun!! I fianlly said"UNCLE" and took light sleeping meds. I was so disappointed in myself but felt I had to keep word to anethesiaologist and to the dr. as well. I so wanted to see the demon within with my own eyes but wasn't meant to be. I would still do spinal again as that is what I prefer and complications do not always happen as others have said. You will know what is right for you, stick to what you feel you want as you are the customer!! Hope this helps in some way.
Unread 01-03-2002, 05:31 AM


The one thing to remember about Zofran (which is truly a wonder drug) is that you need to get it BEFORE the surgery (in preop). So if nausea is your fear, speak loudly then. It works to prevent nausea and they can give it to you in your IV with your other preop medications. It works much better than compazine. My mom takes zofran for her chemotherapy, and it is truly great. It does not work for everyone (if you read the PDR it is about 80 percent effective), but taking it doesn't preclude one from taking compazine or the other antinausea drugs as well.
Unread 01-03-2002, 07:11 AM

Boy, do I empathize with you. You really can't know how TERRIFIED I was of general anesthesia. That was my WORST fear. I wasn't afraid of the surgery, the pain after (which hasn't been bad at all), the no HRT, the possibility of ovarian cancer--or ANYTHING. I was afraid of the anesthesia.

I kept telling everyone, "if ONLY it could be done with a spinal or epidural, I wouldn't be afraid."

Well, I have since found out that technique and quality of medical care are EVERYTHING. My doctor and nurse anesthetists REALLY listened to me. Pre-op (versed) was really fun--I enjoyed myself (WEIRD). Afterwards (not immediately), I was nauseous (no dry heaves or anything), but that was my own fault for not either continuing zofran or requesting it immediately. Once I got phenergan, I was GREAT--and hungry! And the nausea was NOT that bad--I kept eating ice chips and within a few hours it was over. I was very "with it" the entire time and the whole experience was NOT bad at all.

I had an umbilical hernia repaired in the doctor's office with only novacaine--no spinal or anything. I got nauseous and have since found out that abdominal surgery itself can make a person nauseous. They gave me oxygen and the nausea went away.

I think the key is to really, really discuss your options with the doctors THOROUGHLY. If the anesthesiologist is totally comfortable with a spinal and you are too, then try it. Be aware of the possibility of a headache--and ask your anesth. about that.

PS--When my 18 month old had to have surgery, I really looked into anesthesia because I didn't want him to have to go without food for 12 hours (his surgery was at noon). I found out that breast milk is so well absorbed that he could nurse up to four hours before surgery! I checked with the anesthesiologist and was given the OKAY to nurse up to 8 am. Moral of the story--don't be afraid to do something different--JUST BE EDUCATED AND INFORMED.
Unread 01-03-2002, 07:26 AM
Just ask


I second what you say - you just have to ask! I am pertrified of caffine withdrawl (my surgery isn't til 5 in the afternoon), so I asked - and I can have a small amount of java with my pre-op meds at 6am - just enough to take the edge off and still be safe for my anesthesia. I had the same experience as you when my baby had surgeries at 9 months and 24 months - I could nurse up to 4 hours before the surgery and it made things a lot easier, and I am so glad I asked.
Unread 01-03-2002, 09:57 AM

This all points up how MENTAL surgery can be. Many of us are terrified of something. For me, it was dizziness and nervousness. I was so afraid of the anesthesia and everything leading up to it. When I found out they could give me Versed, I was calmer. When I actually GOT the Versed, I LOVED IT!!! I remember a lot of the pre-op waiting room (where I had the IV, etc.) and it was all FUN! When they wheeled me into the OR and asked me to go from my bed to the table, I remember laughing! I remember it all with GOOD feelings. Isn't that weird?

And for Dorrie--just KNOWING she can have a bit of caffeine before her surgery will relax her, which will make surgery go that much better.

PS--the only embarrassing thing will be when I see my doctor on Jan 29th for the post op check. When I saw her in the hospital she mentioned how much 'fun' I was having in the OR. Not good.

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