Although complications are always possible, we adhere to the highest standards to minimize risk. We accomplish this by:
- Performing a complete physical exam and pre-anesthetic bloodwork prior to surgery – this will help us determine if your pet is at risk for complications while under general anesthesia, and help us choose the right anesthetic protocol for your pet.
- Intravenous Catheterization & Fluids – We require the placement of an IV catheter and use of IV fluids during most surgical/anesthetic procedures. This allows us to have quick, available access to the circulatory system (blood) in case of an unforeseen emergency. The fluids help provide support to the circulatory system and prevent dehydration, as well as aid in a quicker recovery from anesthesia.
- Dedicated surgery room – Most surgeries are performed in a room used only for sterile surgical procedures. This helps prevent post-surgical infections.
- Proper surgical attire – Our staff wears disposable caps and masks when entering the surgical suite. Anyone involved in the procedure itself, also wears sterile gowns and single-use gloves.
- Sterile packs and equipment – Surgical instruments are carefully cleaned, sterilized, and wrapped prior to each procedure to help prevent infections.
We use a combination of pre-anesthetic medications/injectable and/or inhalant anesthetics to achieve optimum levels of anesthesia that are safe for your pet.
For short procedures, an injectable anesthetic is given alone that produces a good plane of surgical anesthesia with a quick recovery.
For most procedures, your pet is anesthetized and then intubated (insertion of a tube into the trachea). This will ensure that your pet can receive oxygen at all times and prevents aspiration of any fluids into the lungs.
For procedures that require minimum sedation, an injectable anesthetic is given that produces a good plane of sedation with quick recovery. Anesthesia is maintained with a gas anesthetic.
Monitoring & Pain Management
Monitoring of patients during anesthesia is done in two ways. First, a licensed veterinary technician is with your pet continuously from beginning of anesthesia to recovery. Second, we have a computerized monitor that records heart rate, pulse rate, oxygen levels, respiration, ECG, and core temperature.
Riverside Veterinary Hospital strongly believes in compassionate, quality, medical care for our patients. Thus, all surgery patients will receive pain management before, during and after surgery. Additionally, pain medication may be prescribed to take home. Additional information will be given at discharge.
***Do not give human pain medications to your pet without first consulting your veterinarian. Some human products, including over-the-counter medications, can be fatal for pets.