Why Does My Patient Need an Anesthesiologist / Anesthesia Specialist?

Anesthesia and Your Patients

You need to anesthetize a patient for whom you or the owner has concerns regarding anesthesia. This can be an anxious time for you, the owner and your pet.  In order to provide peace of mind and the best possible outcome from the anesthetic procedure, we are available to provide advanced care for your patients through the services of a dedicated anesthesia professional.

Why does my patient need an Anesthesiologist / Anesthesia Specialist? 

We strive to make every anesthetic procedure as safe as possible, and some patients (such as those with liver, kidney, heart, or lung disease) are at a greater risk of experiencing complications.  Commonly-used anesthesia drugs can produce significant physiologic changes, including low blood pressure, decreased breathing, and abnormal heart rhythms.  Our dedicated team is specialty-trained to manage the risks that are inherent in anesthetic procedures, especially for those patients with underlying health conditions.

The anesthesia specialist’s sole function is to ensure the ongoing health and safety of your pet during the anesthetic procedure.  He or she will constantly assess your pet’s physical parameters and make adjustments to the type and amount of anesthetic agents being administered.

Our service provides state-of-the-art monitoring comparable to what human patients receive when they are anesthetized.  Standard monitoring on every case Includes evaluation of heart rate and rhythm (ECG), blood oxygenation, expired carbon dioxide, temperature, and blood pressure.  Some more critical cases will receive a special catheter to more accurately and more rapidly monitor changes in blood pressure.

The bottom line: we are present to provide your pet with exceptional anesthetic care before, during and after the procedure, regardless of his or her underlying health conditions.

What will happen during my patient’s anesthesia procedure? 

Your patient will undergo a complete anesthesia evaluation, including a physical examination and review of his or her history.  Based on this initial evaluation and the procedure to be performed, we will develop a detailed anesthetic plan tailored to the specific needs of your patient.  This is the first step towards well-managed anesthesia care.  This plan will include:

  • Anticipated anesthesia and procedural problems, along with strategies for resolutions
  • Anesthesia drug doses and supportive care program
  • Recommended physiological monitoring
  • Post-anesthesia recovery plan

In most cases, you patient will be given medications which will help reduce his or her stress and provide excellent pain control.  An intravenous catheter will be placed for drug and fluid administration.  When it is time for your patient to be anesthetized, he or she will have oxygen administered via a mask to help prevent a dangerous drop in blood oxygen, a common complication at our high altitude.  Next, your patient’s anesthetist will administer drugs that will allow your pet to relax enough so that a tube can be placed in his or her trachea.  Your patient will then breathe a combination of oxygen and anesthetic gas for the duration of the procedure.  Additional drugs may be given during the procedure, such as antibiotics, pain medications, and drugs to help improve blood pressure.

Once the procedure is finished, your patient will be moved to a quiet recovery area where his or her vital signs will continue to be monitored, additional pain medications will be given, and he or she will be warmed up to a normal body temperature.  When your patient is awake enough, his or her breathing tube will be removed.  He or she will continue to be monitored closely during the recovery period.

We will also provide a detailed paper record of your patient’s anesthetic procedure to be kept as part of his or her permanent medical record.