Irritable bowel syndrome and inflammatory bowel disease both affect the digestive system. While both can be quite distressing and even debilitating, they are quite different entities.
As an anesthesiologist, I see many people facing surgery, some for the first time. Day surgery, also called 'same day surgery' or 'ambulatory surgery' has become more common. Day surgery procedures are done in a surgery...
Do you pass out when giving blood or having blood drawn or perhaps when having an IV line placed? Do you get clammy, sweaty, light-headed, hot and nauseous when approached by a needle? This is not weakness. A doctor...
Vecuronium and rocuronium are commonly used neuromuscular blockers. The medical professionals who use them may call them "paralytics" or "muscle relaxants" for short. We (anesthesiologists and other...
Diabetes is a systemic disease affecting the whole body. Both type I and type II diabetes present risks that must be considered by the anesthesiologist before, during and after surgery.
CABG, or coronary artery bypass surgery, is performed to restore blood flow to areas of the heart around blockages in the coronary arteries. The definition of CABG and an introduction to the procedure are describe in...
It's very scary to hear a drug referred to as a "paralytic", but sometimes their administration is medically necessary. Neuromuscular blocking agents such as succinylcholine are used to make anesthesia and...
An anesthesiologist explains why your muscles sometimes need to be reversibly paralyzed during anesthesia. Neuromuscular blocking agents are used to achieve this goal. Learn how these drugs work to keep muscles from...
Are you going to use the "Michael Jackson Drug" on me? As an anesthesiologist, I still get this question. Propofol is a routine part of anesthetic practice and is safe and effective in the proper setting,...
Axillary blocks are a type of regional anesthetic. It is one of the peripheral nerve blocks that anesthesiologists may be able to use instead of, or in addition to, general anesthesia.
Would it scare you to know that no one really knows how anesthesia gases work? As amazing as it is, it's true, as explained here by a physician anesthesiologist. Despite this, these gases are used millions of time per...
Regional anesthesia refers to numbing a region of the body, rather than the whole body. An anesthesiologist discusses different techniques to induce regional anesthesia.
Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid pain medication, is a powerful drug. Its use in the operating room is routine and valuable, as explained in this article by an anesthesiologist. Abuse and addiction with fentanyl are...
The normal changes that accompany aging have implications for anesthesia. An anesthesiologist explains the basics of these changes and how anesthesia care is impacted.
The anesthesiologist monitors, and responds to, changes in your vital signs during your entire surgery. Heart rate, rhythm, blood pressure, oxygen level, breathing and other parameters give the anesthesiologist the...
Do you want your doctor to remain strictly formal in your interactions, or do you prefer a more personal discussion? Here, a doctor discusses the potential usefulness-and pitfalls- of having more informal, personal...
Lidocaine, an amide anesthetic, is commonly used for local anesthesia. While its use is safe when dosing guidelines are followed, there are some risks, complications and potential toxicity issues to understand.
Ever wonder exactly what medications an anesthesiologist uses to make sure you don't remember or feel your surgery? It is actually a combination of many drugs. By using multiple medications to administer 'balanced...
An interscalene block of the brachial plexus is used to provide pain relief during and after shoulder surgery. Find out from an anesthesiologist what you should know before having an interscalene block.
Ketamine is best known as a veterinary anesthetic or as a drug of abuse (a club drug or date rape drug), but is an excellent human anesthetic, as well. An anesthesiologist discusses the use of ketamine during...
Epidural pain relief is used by millions of women world-wide every year during labor and delivery. This anesthesiologist-authored article attempts to sort out fact from fiction regarding the complications and...
Femoral nerve blocks are useful for knee and thigh surgery. An anesthesiologist explains the technique, uses and risks of the commonly used femoral nerve block.
Ever wonder "What is the difference between a spinal and an epidural?" The key to understanding the placement of spinals and epidurals is knowing the anatomy of the spinal cord and its coverings. Read an...
Spinal anesthetics are commonly used for cesarean sections. This physician-authored page explains the technique of administration of spinal anesthetics for surgical delivery.
Nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, is used by anesthesiologists as well as its better known use in dentistry. Here, a physician anesthesiologist explains the use of nitrous oxide during general anesthesia. The...
Of all the things that pregnant women worry about, needing surgery is one that most don't face. But, there is a lot of misinformation out there about the risks of anesthesia and surgery on pregnant women. Get the facts...
One of the most important -- and dangerous -- tasks assigned to an anesthesiologist is securing the airway of the unconscious patient. Intubation with a breathing tube and use of a laryngeal mask airway are the most...
An anesthesiologist answers questions about fears before c-section with spinal anesthesia. Fear of the unknown, needles, complications and so on are very common. Serious problems with spinal anesthesia for cesarean...
An anesthesiologist explains the various phrases used to describe sedation anesthesia and analgesia. Sedation can be light, moderate or deep, depending on the needs of the patient. MAC anesthesia implies that the...
What is local anesthesia? How do local anesthetics work? And, most importantly, what do you need to know about their uses and risks as a health consumer or patient? Get the answers to these questions from a...
Whether or not you decide to have an epidural for pain relief during labor is a personal decision. Before making the decision, you should be able to access reliable information, which isn't always easy to find. Here, a...
Asthma and general anesthesia both affect the airways, lungs and breathing. It's no surprise, then, that a history of asthma can cause issues during a general anesthetic. Usually, though, the risk is minimal and...
Gas pain after surgery is a common complaint. This articles offers tips and advice from a board certified anesthesiologist for how to prevent and treat post-operative gas pain.
High blood pressure can be a problem during general anesthesia and surgery. If you are facing surgery, controlling your hypertension will make your anesthetic as safe as possible.
Acid reflux under anesthesia can lead to aspiration pneumonia and lung damage. Find out, from a physician anesthesiologist, how to protect yourself from these complications if you have acid reflux and are going to...
The entire body is affected by an anesthetic. Here, a board-certified anesthesiologist gives an overview of the effects of anesthesia from head to toe.
The effects of anesthesia on the heart are difficlut to generalize. A board-certified anesthesiologist discusses the common cardiac effects of general anesthesia and also, explains why there is some variability.
Bladder retention after general anesthesia is fairly common. Find out why this happens. Understand your own risk factors and related complications from a board-certified anesthesiologist.
Post spinal anesthesia side effects can result from the needles, the technique or the medications used. Most side effects are minor and short-lived, but knowing that they are not harmful can be very reassuring if you...
If you have Sjogren's syndrome, you may worry about how you will tolerate anesthesia and surgery. There are unique considerations with Sjogren's syndrome and general anesthesia, but with a little information and...
Seizures after anesthesia are a rare, but recognized complication in the post-operative period. They most often strike those with epilepsy or preexisting brain abnormalities. Keep reading to find out other risk factors...
Post-operative cognitive dysfunction is the name given to the changes that occur in mental performance after surgery. It was once thought that this was the result of general anesthesia, but further research seems to...
The bible is often cited as THE guide for morality and select stories are made cutesy and read to children. But, have you ever really considered what is behind those stories, what else is implied by them and why they...
Post operative nausea and vomiting are the most common side effects after anesthesia and surgery. Find out from a board-certified anesthesiologist how to prevent and treat this unpleasant side effect.
Preparing your children properly for their first ski lesson or season of skiing can make all the difference in their enjoyment of the sport. Find out how to foster a love for skiing that will help your child develop...
Tim Minchin uses humor in a uniquely brilliant way to defend reason, humanitarianism and peace. He is an amazing talent- both musically and comically.
Anesthesiologists are medical doctors who specialize in the care of patients before, during and after surgery. Whether the anesthetic is routine and easy or emergent and life-threatening, the anesthesiologist is with...
Climbing the Mountaineer's Route on Mt. Whitney provides a challenging alternate route to the summit, separate from the main trail that most hikers take. The Mountaineer's route, especially in winter, requires a...
Spend Valentine's Day in South Lake Tahoe. A crystal blue, sparkling mountain lake, beautiful snow-covered mountains and a little planning can make this the most romantic getaway ever.
The corticosteroid prednisone definitely saves lives but has some serious and life-long consequences. Here, a physician and patient formerly on long-term prednisone discusses the pros and cons of this potent medication.
Know what to expect and how to prevent or treat the most common after-effects of anesthesia, including nausea, sore throat, confusion, muscle aches, itching, and emotional outbursts.
There are many opportunities for nurses in the operating room. These jobs are diverse but all provide a challenging career with many rewards.
Epidurals are best known for providing pain relief during labor. But, epidural anesthesia can be used in other settings as well. Find out if this type of regional anesthesia is an option for your surgery. Learn the...
A Tahoe local tells you what you need to know to drive in and through the mountains safely in the wintertime. Planning, common sense and the tips presented here prepare you for you winter trip to Lake Tahoe.
Being awake under anesthesia (intraoperative awareness) is a serious and traumatic event. A board-certified anesthesiologist discusses this frightening complication, when it really happens, risk factors and why it most...
Here's what you need to consider when deciding whether your new wood-burning stove should be a catalytic or non-catalytic model.
Pellet stoves provide a popular option for heating a room or a home. This device can save you money in the long run and can heat your home even when the power goes out.
South Lake Tahoe in the winter provides beautiful views, skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing and abundant sunshine. But the seemingly daunting task of getting here intimidates many would-be visitors. Find out how to...
Spinal anesthesia is commonly used for cesarean sections, knee and hip replacements and other surgeries on the lower half of the body. Learn the most important facts about spinal anesthesia, what to expect, side effects...
Prepare for surgery: A board-certified anesthesiologist explains general anesthesia, what to expect, possible side effects, and potential complications, and answers frequently asked questions.
Wood burning stoves and pellet stoves are again rising in popularity. They provide ample heat even when the power goes out and save money on heating bills in the long run.