Going under anesthesia always carries along various risks, even for animals that are very healthy. To minimize these risks, Woodland Spring Veterinary Hospital performs thorough examinations on pets that need to undergo surgical procedures before developing an anesthetic protocol. This will enable our veterinarians to determine what underlying health issues exist, if any, and design the proper protocol.
During the physical exam, we may recommend blood tests to determine how well vital organs like the kidneys, liver, intestines and pancreas are functioning. Our blood tests can also give us essential information about our patients’ immune systems, oxygen-carrying capabilities and coagulation processes. Once we have completed the examination and blood-screening process and everything appears to be normal, our veterinarians will choose the proper anesthetic agent. In general, a healthy animal should not eat 12 hours or drink water two hours prior to surgery to ensure the anesthesia works properly.
Before delivering anesthesia, we will administer a premedication that is designed to decrease patients’ anxiety, reduce pain tied to the surgical procedure, decrease the necessary anesthetic drug dose and promote a smooth post-anesthesia recovery. For shorter surgical procedures, we can utilize just injectable anesthetics, but we will often combine injectable and gas anesthesia for longer procedures. Regardless of the duration of the surgical procedure, our expert veterinary team closely monitors our patients’ blood pressure, heart rate, respiration, temperature and pulse throughout the procedure.