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How risky is anesthesia?

Dr. Stuart A. Linder, MD
Plastic Surgeon

Anesthesia, in general, carries very, very low risk when performed by board-certified anesthesiologists. In my practice, having performed thousands of surgeries with the same anesthesiologist, under general anesthesia, thankfully we have had NO morbidity nor mortality in my practice. Anesthesia risks certainly will increase , however with high-risk patients. There is an anesthesia scale associated with risks of patients under anesthesia. ASA 1 patients are considered healthy with no serious medical diseases. The majority of our patients that undergo plastic and reconstructive surgery are low-risk patients in general. In an ambulatory center, it is important to triage patients who are at increased risk under anesthesia, and those patients should be done in an in-hospital setting. Our patients undergo intensive preoperative evaluations, including history and physical, full sets of laboratories, as well as EKGs when over the age of 45. With appropriate general anesthesia, patients should have no remembrance whatsoever of the surgery, feel no pain, and should wake up with minimal to no nausea whatsoever.  General anesthesia is considerd safe when administered by an appropriate board-certified anesthesiologist in an accredited ambulatory facility, or in an inpatient hospital setting.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.