Total Knee Replacement Anesthesia
Prior to your surgery for total knee replacement, you will be given anesthesia. This way, you will feel no pain during the procedure. There are two types of anesthesia for total knee replacement: spinal and general. Spinal anesthesia is injected into your lower back, while general anesthesia is given through your IV and puts you to sleep during the surgery.
Anesthesia for Total Knee Replacement: An Overview
Anesthesia is used to eliminate the pain felt during a procedure. For total knee replacement surgery anesthesia, the two most commonly used types are spinal or general anesthesia.
With spinal anesthesia, your anesthesiologist will inject medicine into your lower back. To make the placement of the needle easier, you will be asked to either lie on your side, curled up, or to sit on the side of the table, hunched forward. You will also receive medicine that makes you feel relaxed or sleepy. Although the spinal anesthesia will take away all sensation of pain, you might still feel some pressure and movement during the surgery.
The other option is general anesthesia. This type uses medication to put you into a deep sleep so that you are not aware of any pain, pressure, or movement during the knee replacement surgery.
In order to do this, you will first be asked to breathe through an oxygen mask. Then you will be given medications through your IV, which will cause you to feel pleasantly relaxed, and you will slowly drift off to sleep. After you are sound asleep, a breathing tube will be placed into your windpipe to assist with your breathing throughout the surgery. Your anesthesiologist and anesthesia care team will give you other medications as required during your surgery through your IV.
You will talk to the anesthesiologist prior to the surgery, and any questions or concerns you have regarding the choice or effects of anesthesia can be discussed at that time.