The kind of anesthesia used during a plastic surgery procedure, the skill of the anesthesiologist and nurse anesthetist, and how smoothly the patient moves through the anesthesia technique can either make or break a good plastic surgery operation and its final result.
When I had a rhinoplasty in 1985, one year before I got pregnant with my first child, I had 2 days of post-op nausea and vomiting. The bruising and swelling in my face practically ruined the good work that Dr. Musgrave did. Fortunately for my patients, there are new options available to ensure that they don’t have to endure the same situation.Plastic surgery anesthesia techniques have advanced light years since 1985. Our well-trained nurse anesthetists and anesthesiologists have drugs so superior, so fast-acting and resolving, that very few of our patients have significant nausea post-op. Furthermore, I inject almost all patients with some Marcaine post-op, an anesthetic that lasts for 6 hours so they can get home and get some food in their tummy, get on the couch, and can take a Percocet before any stronger pain arrives. Percocet, or any narcotic oral drug, should never be taken on an empty stomach.
The unfortunate situation is that there is a terrible disconnect between what we can do for patients and what insurance will pay for. This can cause patients to have to make the choice between receiving the quality care that is available and saving a few dollars out of pocket. For those in Western PA where we tend to have poor health insurance payouts for anesthesia, I do recommend that my patients make the choice to pay for their anesthesia out of pocket. Their anesthesia care will be better because I can provide them with the best available treatments. I have had many plastic surgery patients pay for their anesthesia out of pocket and their outcomes have definitely been better because of their decision.
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