Friday, 23 November 2012

A chat with the anaesthetist

I had a call this week from the anaesthetist at the hospital. I'm not sure if it is the one I'll have next Monday, or just one of the team, but she called because of what I'd told them at the pre-op assessment, about how I always end up passed out on oxygen after a general. (OK, 'always' sounds a bit OTT, I know. It's true but it has only been twice.)

At first, she was threatening not to anaesthetise me at all! Eek! So I explained what usually happens - I come round OK, then I suddenly go tingly, see flashing lights, I feel incredibly heavy, then I come round with an oxygen mask on my face. It's pretty dramatic and the nurses always look worried.

The anaesthetist was unimpressed.

"Oh," she said. "That's just a faint."

Just a faint? I dine out on this story!

She explained that as I have low blood pressure, and a GA lowers it even more, I'm fine when horizontal but put me upright and pow! Blood 'rushes out of my head' (her phrase) and into my feet, and I pass out.

Suddenly it's not such a great story, but the plus side is that I can still have my surgery, and all I have to do is make sure I'm kept horizontal for longer when I'm on the recovery ward.

So Thunderbirds are still go.

I did decide not to talk to her about wanting, as my anaesthetist friend told me, a Des and Remi. I'm saving that for the day itself. I want to see their faces when I ask.

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