Anesthesiology | Sturdy Memorial Hospital | Attleboro, MA

Anesthesiology

Our board certified anesthesiologists are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to ensure your safety and your comfort during inpatient, outpatient, and obstetrical procedures. From pre-admission consultation and testing, to surgery, through recovery in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU), our experienced staff is on-hand to help prevent and relieve your pain at all points of care. 

Anesthesia Care Team

Sturdy's anesthesia care team includes physicians, anesthesiologists, certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs), and anesthesia techs who strive to reduce your pain and anxieties. Treatment plans are tailored to specific to your medical needs.

Commonly performed procedures for post-operative pain relief include:

  • Femoral nerve injection and/or catheter placement for lower extremity surgery
  • Brachial plexus injection and/or catheter placement for upper extremity surgery
  • Epidural analgesia for abdominal and thoracic surgery

Diagnostic and therapeutic pain management are also offered through our Pain Clinic.

The Process

Approximately one week before surgery, you will have an evaluation in the pre-admission testing center. A member of the nursing staff, in consultation with a physician anesthesiologist, will speak with you about any pre-existing medical conditions, describe techniques that are likely to be performed, coordinate lab testing and consultation to minimize operative risks, and discuss procedures to minimize peri-operative pain. Information gathered in the interview process is later reviewed by the anesthesia care team. 

On the day of surgery, patients enter through the day surgery department, and meet with a physician anesthesiologist to review the treatment plan and discuss any questions. During surgery, a physician anesthesiologist is always present during induction (going to sleep) and other critical times, and remains readily available at all other times to manage and monitor your care.

After surgery, patients recover from the effects of anesthesia in the PACU where the anesthesiologist will prescribe any necessary medication and monitor progress until discharge home or to a nursing unit. Patients may see an anesthesiologist for post-op pain management on subsequent days to assess pain management or relief needs. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Nausea

Will I experience nausea while under treatment with anesthesia?

The nature of the surgery being performed, along with individual factors such as age and gender, affect a patient's likelihood of experiencing nausea and/or vomiting. However, significant advances in techniques, monitoring, and medication have greatly minimized the risk. 

Fasting

Why must I fast before receiving anesthesia?

Though it may seem inconvenient, fasting before receiving anesthesia is an important precaution required for your comfort and safety. Anesthetics relax the body and remove natural protective reflexes. Any recently ingested materials my passively travel upward through the esophagus becoming a potentially dangerous aspiration hazard. During your pre-operative or "pre-op" visit, you'll discuss fasting with the anesthesia team and develop a plan specifically for you. 

Diabetes

I have diabetes, is it safe to fast?

Diabetic patients often have concerns about the impact of pre-op fasting on their blood sugar levels. Individual needs will be discussed in the pre-op interview, and a plan will be made to ensure safety before, during and after surgery. 

Medications

What medications, if any, should I take the morning of my surgery?

This is discussed in the pre-op interview. Typically, patients are directed to take all medications for blood pressure and heart conditions, and to bring all asthma inhalers and medications with them. Other medications will be discussed during the interview.

Spinal Anesthesia

If I elect to have spinal anesthesia, will I be required to lay flat for 12 hours? Will my risk for side effects increase?

Just as there have been great advances in anesthetic medicines, much progress has also been made in the delivery of these medications. The risk of side effects has been greatly minimized by refinements in the size and shape of needles used to administer spinal anesthetics. Bed rest following administration is no longer required, and the chance of post-op headache and other side effects is equal to or lower than risks from general anesthesia.