How To Minimize The Effects Of Anesthesia After Spine Surgery

Category: Spine Surgery | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: January 31, 2022

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Spine surgery is typically performed after a patient has been given anesthesia to ensure that no pain is felt during the procedure itself. Anesthesia is a wonderful tool, but there are some slight risks and potential complications associated with the numbing agent. In today’s blog, we take a closer look at some of the potential complications associated with anesthesia, and how to minimize these effects following your spinal procedure.

Anesthesia Risks During And After Spine Surgery

Anesthesia administration and patient care while they are under the influence of anesthesia has only gotten better over the last few decades, so major complications are quite rare. That said, minor side effects are a little more common. They aren’t typically that serious, but they can make you uncomfortable, and you’ll already be in some discomfort following the operation, so minimizing the potential side effects of anesthesia is helpful. Here’s a look at some of the more commonly reported side effects of anesthesia.

  • Nausea
  • Grogginess
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle aches
  • Dry mouth
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Headaches

Preventing The Side Effects Of Anesthesia

It’s not always possible to prevent some minor or mild side effects as your body works to rid the effects of anesthesia from your body, but there are some things we do with patients to help lessen the impact of these side effects. Anti-nausea medication can help with nausea and dizziness, and we always have staff or therapists nearby when you take your first steps following your procedure.

Giving the patient plenty of time to rest and ensuring that they always have water nearby can help to minimize the effects of dry mouth, muscle aches and headaches, and we explain how the anesthesia can sometimes affect the nerves that help to regulate urination so that you understand what’s going on if you’re having any difficulty with urination.

With that said, it’s also important that you don’t just lie in bed for days following your operation. Early movement can help to strengthen structures and increase your flexibility and range motion, so we’re not going to baby you either. We’ll never make you do anything if you’re still lacking sensation in any areas of your body, but if you’re just feeling a bit tired, we still may recommend that we help get you up and move safely, even if it’s just for a couple minutes. This activity helps to push healthy blood throughout your body and can help structures get the nutrients they need after the physical trauma of surgery.

We are extremely careful when administering and monitoring patients who have been given anesthesia, and we know how to make your first 48 hours as comfortable as possible as you regain sensation in your extremities. We’ll do everything we can to minimize risks or potential side effects so that you can start your rehab sooner and experience more functional improvement. For more information, or for any specific questions about your spine or spinal anesthesia, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi’s office today.

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