If you undergo foot surgery, you will receive anesthesia for your comfort and to manage your pain. The type of anesthesia you receive depends on the type of surgery you are having, your health, and your preferences. Your foot surgeon in Sugar Land will explain your options to you so you know what to expect. Here is a look at some of the different types of anesthesia used during foot and ankle surgery.
Local and Regional Anesthesia
Local and regional anesthesia are similar to what you receive at the dentist. You receive a series of injections that prevent nerve impulses from being conducted, thus blocking any pain you may feel. A local anesthetic is used to numb a small area, like a toe, while a regional blocks pain in a large area, such as your leg. With both these forms of anesthesia, you remain completely awake, so you can respond to questions and instructions from your foot doctor. Some of the benefits of these types of anesthesia is that there is no increased risk of heart attack or stroke as there is with general anesthesia. They are also the most affordable forms of anesthesia.
Conscious sedation involves the use of a mild sedative, delivered via an IV by your foot surgeon. You will not fall asleep with this kind of sedation, but you will feel extremely relaxed. Because this kind of anesthesia does not block pain, it is often combined with a local or regional option. Conscious sedation is not ideal for long procedures and can cause nausea and headaches in some patients. If you are nervous about your procedure, your podiatrist may recommend conscious sedation.
When you have general anesthesia, you will be put in a deep state of sleep throughout your operation, so you don’t experience any kind of pain. You also will not have knowledge of the surgery. General anesthesia comes with a risk of heart attack, stroke, and lung infection, which is greater in smokers and people who are overweight. Your surgeon will help you determine if this is the best fit for your operation.