Anesthesia (Conscious Sedation)
Conscious Sedation for pain treatment procedures is usually reserved for procedures that may be more invasive than simple needle blocks or superficial procedures. It is usually done with monitoring capability to carefully watch vital signs as indicated. By mouth, or PO, medications may be used for longer office based procedures that are more painful. Modern techniques allow for the patient to be awake and comfortable yet able to answer important questions during the procedure to insure better outcomes.
Some of these procedures may include spinal cord stimulator trial and implants, radiofrequency ablation used to ‘burn’ nerves, deeper blocks such sympathetic blocks or stellate ganglion blocks, as well as other invasive procedures for pain management.
What to Expect
The patient can expect to be given instructions as to diet and eating prior to the conscious sedation. This is to insure safety while sedated. Instructions and policies as to afterwards will also be given and can include diet, activity, machine/car operation avoidance as well as avoiding decision making for 24-48 hours afterwards. Most procedures that require this type of sedation will require the patient to not self- transport as well and you will need a driver.
Outcomes of modern techniques for conscious sedation have come a long ways to insure comfort and analgesia for outpatient procedures. With low doses of proper medications even the most fearful patient can well tolerate invasive procedures as indicated. Minimal side effects are the norm with excellent recovery and return to pre sedation functionality is to be expected. In most cases this is achieved within hours after the procedure. Medical condition prior and tolerance to the procedure are the main indicators for the need of medications for conscious sedation.