The word “anaesthesia” is derived from the Greek words “an” meaning “without” and “aesthesis” meaning “sensation”. Anaesthesia is a pharmacologically induced reversible state of amnesia, analgesia and loss of responsiveness. It is achieved using a combination of drugs like analgesics, hypnotics, sedatives and paralytics.
There are various types of anaesthesia which can be used individually or in combination to achieve the best and safest anaesthetic for each individual patient
Under GA you will be put into a state of controlled unconsciousness which means that you will not be aware of your procedure. This is done using drugs injected into a vein, gases that you inhale or a combination thereof.
These agents inhibit pain sensation, movement and nerve transmission at the level of the brain.
Using either drops, spray, ointment or an injection of local anaesthetic, only a particular part of the body is numbed. While you do not feel anything in that area, you will remain conscious.
Local anaesthetic drugs are injected near the bundles of nerves which carry signals from that part of the body to the brain. Whole body parts are made numb. You remain conscious but pain free. These are divided into spinals, epidurals and specific limb blocks.
Spinals and Epidurals
Injections into the lower back are used to temporarily paralyse the nerves of the spinal cord producing numbness of the lower half of the body.
2. Limb Blocks
Local anaesthetic is injected around a nerve or group of nerves making a single limb numb.
Injected drugs or gases are used to keep you calm and slightly sleepy but rousable. This is may be combined with local anesthesia or a regional block for the procedure.