Safe Anesthesia for Cardiac Procedures By Dr. Anupam Shrivastava

Until the discovery of general anesthesia, surgery was performed only as last resort. A conscious person undergoing surgery without pain relief is unimaginable in the present modern era. We expect a pain free surgery without memory of the procedure, which is why general anesthesia was discovered. Now-a-days most of the adult and pediatric heart surgeries are performed under general anesthesia where the patient remains unconscious and feels no pain during the surgery.

On 16th October 1846, US dentist William Morton anesthetised a young patient in public demonstration at Massachusetts General Hospital using Ether. This discovery led to the development of general anesthesia. This is regarded as one of the greatest discoveries in the field of medical science. Followed by this was the discovery of Chloroform. Today, Ether and Chloroform have been replaced by much safer and more effective agents such as sevoflurane, isoflurane and various other intravenous drugs. These drugs are used in combination in order to give a safe and balanced anesthesia during the surgery. Over the years, experience in field of anesthesia and development and availability of much safer and new drugs have made anesthesia very safe for heart surgeries.

Safe anesthesia practices combined with modern monitoring techniques using multi parameter monitors, transesophageal echocardiography (TEE), cardiac output monitoring, I.V. fluid therapy monitoring, arterial blood gas analysis etc have made heart procedures and surgeries very safe. These equipments help in picking up physiological changes during surgery and correct them. This is very important as most of the bypass surgeries are performed on beating heart.

Pediatric and adult cardiac surgeries and interventions are regularly performed at SPS hospitals. We are equipped with latest generation of monitors, ventilators, anesthesia work station and machines like intra aortic balloon pump and ECMO. This is supported by state of art post operative intensive care unit, experienced staff, 24 X 7 lab services, blood bank and radiology services.

Cardiac surgery and interventions are team work. At SPS hospitals, we call it a heart team, where each procedure is discussed between the cardiac surgeon, cardiologist, anaesthesiologist, perfusionist and operation room team staff. A safe anesthesia plan and good post operative intensive care contributes in a major way to achieve favourable outcomes, pain free post operative period and a satisfied smiling patient at the time of discharge from the hospital.

Wishing everyone a happy & healthy heart!

Our Expert

Dr. Anupam Shrivastava did his post graduation (M.D. Anesthesiology) in 1993. After working in various hospitals, he joined SPS Hospital, Ludhiana in 2005. At SPS Hospitals, he developed the Cardiac Anaesthesia Services and Critical care department. He was also crucial in developing resuscitation services at SPS Hospital and serves as Chairman of Code Blue committee in the hospital since the inception. He was instrumental in developing teaching programs in Critical Care, currently running IDCCM, IFCCM, IDCCN and DNB programs. He is founder Chairman of Ludhiana Chapter of Indian Society of Critical Care Medicine. He has also acted as Past President of North Zone Association of Cardiothoracic Anesthesia (NZACTA).

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