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wasperformed FacialSurgery.com
Steven M. Denenberg, M.D.
Steven M. Denenberg, M.D.

FAQ:

Anesthesia

Facial plastic surgery works well with either intravenous sedation or general anesthesia.  During a general anesthetic, a breathing tube is placed through your mouth into your windpipe, and anesthetic gases keep you asleep.

With intravenous sedation, medications are dripped into your IV to make you sleep.  The areas to be operated on are then numbed with lidocaine, which is what we use nowadays instead of Novocain.  The patient doesn't have the breathing tube, but she is asleep, and she remembers nothing at all about the operation.

I perform all of the facial plastic surgery operations under intravenous sedation.  I think it's easier on the body, allowing faster recovery, and it has a lower incidence of postoperative nausea.  Also, it's hard for me to judge the size and shape of a nose if there is a tube sticking out of the patient's mouth.

However, in capable hands the general anesthetic is not dangerous or a particularly bad thing.  So make sure that you have selected the right doctor to perform your operation, and then probably go along with his preferences for anesthesia.  If your surgeon will perform your operation with either anesthetic method and you have a preference, by all means let him know.  But it's hard enough to find an excellent plastic surgeon.  Don't reject one just because his preference for anesthesia conflicts with yours.


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