Patient Resources

Recovery at Home

How long do the anesthesia medications last?

Most anesthetic drugs used in the operating room are completely out of your system within 24 hrs after the end of your procedure.


Will the anesthesia medications affect or interfere with other meds that I take?

 It is safe to take your usual medications after your anesthetic. However, make sure your surgeon is aware of all medications that you take, as these may interact with the pain medications that they prescribe.  Hormonal birth controls may not be as effective after some medications given during your procedure. Please talk to your anesthesiologist to discuss if you need to use non-hormonal contraceptives for 7 days.


I had a regional block for my procedure and went home while the block was still in place (area was numb and pain free), when should I start taking my pain medications?

  Once a regional block begins to wear off, the ability to move your arm or leg and the return of feeling (including pain) occurs rather quickly. It is important to not get behind in your pain control measures. We recommend that you begin taking the pain medications prescribed by your surgeon as soon as you begin regaining any feeling in the area that was numb. Then take your pain medications as directed by your surgeon.


I have Sleep Apnea.  Is there anything special that I should do?

The medications used during anesthesia and to control your pain after your surgical procedure may cause an increase in the frequency and severity of apnea spells in the early recovery period after your surgical procedure. If your primary physician recommended that you use a CPAP mask, it is very important that you use it both at night and during any naps.   


Why is my throat sore?

The breathing tube that is used during a General Anesthetic can irritate the tender tissue of your throat. This is a common occurrence and usually goes away within a few days. If it is bothersome, throat lozenges, popsicles, and soft foods will help decrease the discomfort. If symptoms are severe or last more than a few days, please contact us.


When can I resume breast-feeding after an anesthetic?

In general, the amount of anesthetic medications secreted in breast milk is very small. However, if you feel more comfortable pumping and discarding for the first 12 hrs after surgery, you may choose to do so. 


What should I do if my pain meds aren't managing my pain?

 Please contact your surgeon if you are having difficulty managing your pain.


What if I have more questions about my anesthetic?

If you have additional questions or concerns, please feel free to call our nurse-line at 612-452-0858.