After Anesthesia

​The Patient's Active Role Assists in Recovery

Anesthesia Means Freedom from Pain During Surgery 

Each year, millions of people in the United States undergo some form of medical treatment requiring anesthesia. In the hands of qualified anesthesia professionals such as Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs), anesthesia is a safe and effective means of alleviating pain during nearly every type of medical procedure.

All anesthesia care is provided with the highest degree of professionalism. Sensitive and sophisticated equipment monitors every important function of your body. In response to your body’s reactions, your anesthesia professional will modify your anesthetic as needed.

But anesthesia care is not confined just to surgery. The process also refers to activities that take place before— and after—an anesthetic is given. Before anesthesia, a preoperative interview with your anesthesia professional supplies valuable information that helps determine your care. Open communication and cooperation are essential during the interview.

Communication and Cooperation are Necessary After Surgery as Well

The anesthesia drugs that you have been given can remain in your body for up to 24 hours after their administration. You are not completely “back to your old self” until the anesthetic has been totally eliminated.   

Also during this time, it is still possible for substances entering your body to interact with the anesthetic. Certain substances may cause negative reactions. Therefore, check with your care provider about what medications you can take. Continue to cooperate with your nurse anesthetist and physician after surgery. Don’t hesitate to ask questions.​

Do's and Dont's After Anesthesia

  • ​Do leave the healthcare facility accompanied by a responsible adult.
  • Do remain quietly at home for the day and rest.
  • Do arrange for someone​​ to care for your small children for the day.
  • Do take liquids first and slowly progress to a light meal.
  • Do call your anesthesia professional or the facility where you were treated if you have any questions. 
  • Don’t drive a car for at least 24 hours.
  • Don’t operate complex equipment for at least 24 hours.
  • Don’t make any important decisions or sign any legal documents for the day.
  • Don’t take any medications unless prescribed by or discussed with your physician.
  • Don’t drink alcohol for at least 24 hours.​

CRNAs - A Tradition of Quality Care

Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNAs) are anesthesia specialists who administer more than 34 million anesthetics to patients in the United States each year. The nurse anesthesia specialty has a history of more than 150 years.

CRNAs represent a commitment to high standards in a demanding field. The educational requirements to become a CRNA are extensive. Prior to applying for admission to a graduate program in nurse anesthesia, a candidate must have a four-year bachelor of science degree in nursing or other appropriate baccalaureate degree, a current license as a registered nurse, and a minimum of one year of acute care nursing experience. The master’s degree nurse anesthesia program itself is 24-36 months, depending on university requirements. CRNAs are board certified, and mandatory continuing education is required for recertification every two years.

Nurse anesthetists provide high-quality anesthesia services combined with personal concern for the health and welfare of patients. They are happy to assist you and offer information about what to expect with your anesthesia.