Scared of General Anesthetic?

I'm planning on undergoing a rhinoplasty procedure in LA. He said in my consultation that I will be put under general anesthetic.I have heard stories of waking up, people can lose all memory permanently after the surgery and forget everything also have heard that people can die during the surgery because of anesthetic? I am anemic and I also have panic attacks and a slow heart beat. How safe/dangerous is this? Please help me I'm scared of memory loss and or death during general anesthetic?

Doctor Answers 5

General anesthesia for rhinoplasty

These days general anesthesia is very safe and allows for a very controlled situation in which the anesthesiologist is able to monitor everything during your surgery. Awareness is very rare in these situations (I've never had any of my patients note awareness under general anesthesia).

You should talk with your surgeon about your concerns further. You can read more about rhinoplasty anesthesia at my web reference link below.

Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Scared of General Anesthetic?

Your anxiety regarding general anesthesia is very common. Probably the best thing to do is call your surgeon and ask him to have his anesthesiologist give you a call. But in general, even though all the bad things you mentioned have been known to occur, they would be exceedingly rare in a healthy patient. The anesthesiologist will be sitting beside you the entire time monitoring all your vital signs constantly. He will be well trained in handling any problems that might occur, but that is very unlikely to happen. For a general statistical comparison, a healthy person is 50 times more likely to die in a car accident on the way to work than in surgery under a general anesthetic, but that never stops us from getting in a car. You will do fine.

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

General anesthesia for rhinoplasty

For patient safety and comfort, we recommend general anesthesia. In over 25 years performing rhinoplasty, we have never had a patient have any recollection of the procedure under a general anesthetic. General anesthesia is very safe today. When patients have conscious sedation they do have situational awareness of their surgery which we do not recommend. Make sure the person putting you to sleep is a board certified physician MD anesthesiologist. Also good idea to meet with your primary care physician, your surgeon, and the anesthesiologist ahead of time to make sure that any medical conditions are addressed preoperatively. For many examples of cosmetic rhinoplasty, please see our photo gallery link below

William Portuese, MD
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 145 reviews

Scared of General Anesthetic?

I would encourage you to describe your concerns to your surgeon and the anesthesiologist until you feel more comfortable.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 reviews

Scared Of General Anesthesia

Prior to your surgery, have your Plastic Surgeon schedule a consult for you with the Anesthesia personnel. Discuss your medical history with them. They may require you have lab testing, and a physical prior to the appointment. I have never had a patient experience the anesthesia issues you spoke of. It is best to go into surgery with all your questions answered. Best wishes to you!

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.