anesthésie rachidienne

Spinal anesthesia : 5 things to remember

Before any surgery, a consultation with an anesthesist is mandatory. Your doctor may prefer the use of spinal anesthesia : what are the 5 things to remember on this specific technique ? 
  1. It consists in the injection, through a needle, of a local anesthesic on the lower part of the spine. More precisely, it will be injected in what we call the cerebrospinal fluid. The skin will have been previously anesthetizied, so you won’t feel any pain. It is particularly efficient to completely desensitize the lower limbs. 
  2. Commonly used in surgery, it is a close relative of the epidural anesthesia. It has the advantage of acting directly on the medullary nerve roots – and the needle can be immediately removed. 
  3. This technique has another advantage : it mitigates the side effects related to post-surgery. It leads to less nauseas, a quicker awakening, less sore throats, a quicker ability to eat and drink after surgery…
  4. As it is a local anesthesia, you can stay awake during the spinal anesthesia. However, if you’d rather not be conscious, your doctor can also administer a sedation during the anesthesia. 
  5. There are some counter-indications to this type of anesthesia, like coagulation disorders or a skin infection on your lower back. You can also refuse the spinal anesthesia : your doctor will then discuss other options with you. 

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