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Posted on 12-07-2012

Veterinary anesthesia is a means to perform procedures on our pets to insure good health and comfort. General anesthesia or local anesthesia are different types of anesthesia. Anesthesia does come with certain risks, but with knowledgeable doctors and staff most risks can be minimized with proper protocol.008_1.JPG

The first step is bringing your pet in for an exam by Eagle Animal Hospital's doctor's and staff. Our team will determine whether or not your pet needs surgery. The doctors will give you and your pet as many options as possible and the best plan to help your pet. For instance, you may be given the option to choose between general or local anesthesia. General anesthesia involves giving your pet an anesthetic gas until your pet reaches a safe level of an unconscious state. On the other hand, local anesthesia involves numbing a localized area on your pet to perform a minor procedure while they may be awake or lightly sedated.

We use general anesthesia for major procedures such as spays, neuters, dental work, deep wounds, and large growth/lump removals. Recovery from general anesthesia involves at least four to six hours or more of monitoring by our staff after the procedure. Monitoring involves assessing your pet's vital signs and making sure these signs remain within normal range. Vital signs are your pet's temperature, respiratory rate, heart rate and pulse rate. We also monitor any level of discomfort your pet may be experiencing and administer additional pain medication. (Pain medication is given prior to and after surgery as needed per patient.) After initial recovery in the hospital your pet will be able to continue to recover at home, while the anesthesia continues to wear off. The doctors and staff will discuss the necessary steps you need to continue a safe recovery for your pet.

Local anesthesia is used for removing small growths or lumps, and for treating superficial wounds. Your pet will recover quickly and go home with you within as little as an hour or a brief hospital stay. Pain medication is given prior to and after these small procedures. The doctors and staff will instruct you on how to continue care at home.

Depending on the type of anesthesia, general or local, each pet will recover from anesthesia differently. Young pets may recover from anesthesia more quickly than our senior pets. With this in mind, we will adjust which type of drugs we use for each patient and type of surgery. At Eagle Animal Hospital we will help you determine the proper plan to help your pet safely go through anesthesia, surgery and recovery.

If you have any questions regarding your pet and anesthesia or surgery, please call one of our team members at 610-458-8789. We serve Chester Spring, Downingtown, Exton, Glenmoore, and surrounding areas.

Written by Jennifer Styer, veterinary technician

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