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Old 03-21-2013, 08:07 AM   #1
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Help!!! Getting nervous about surgery/general anesthesia

Hey mamas,

My dd goes in on Monday (the 25th) for an umbilical hernia repair and I'm getting super freaked out. I had been told (not sure why) that she was going to be sedated but not under general anesthesia... I just talked to the nurse who informed me that it WILL in fact be general anesthesia and she will have a breathing tube etc. I'm getting really nervous.. When she was sedated for an MRI I was able to be with her the whole time but the nurse says she may wake up without me.. I'm really nervous that she's going to completely freak out.

They also told me that she will not get anything other than OTC meds for pain when at home... Should I push for a stronger rx?

I also have not told her about this yet, I planned to tell her a day or two before so it doesn't freak her out too much... Good plan or should I tell her asap? How do you prepare your kiddos for surgery?

Any help/advice/experiences would be greatly appreciated...
Please help me chill out!

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Old 03-21-2013, 08:17 AM   #2
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Re: Help!!! Getting nervous about surgery/general anesthesia

My SN kiddo was only 2 when he had to be sedated, so we didn't tell him anything. Of course even if we did, he probably wouldn't understand. He doesn't seem to comprehend most of what we say. We weren't able to be with him the entire time during his MRI when he was sedated. The most heartbreaking part of that was the nurse literally picked him up and carried him into the room with the machine because he was so small and it was easier than moving the bed.

As for pain meds, I would ask again about pain medication. Especially if she as a low pain tolerance. My sister had this surgery at 22 and she was pretty wiped out for most of a week.
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Old 03-21-2013, 08:23 AM   #3
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Re: Help!!! Getting nervous about surgery/general anesthesia

Thanks for your response mama... My dd had her MRI done when she was around 10 months, I was lucky to be able to be with her.. She was soo floppy all sedated but I was still able to carry her in also because she was soo teeny. I am beyond nervous... She is almost 4 and while she has some definite delays, cognitively she is on target or ahead so she understands EVERYTHING. I'm just hoping that I'm making the right decision. I will ask about a pain med rx... I dont usually give lots of meds but i also dont want her to be in a lot of pain.
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Old 03-21-2013, 07:29 PM   #4
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Re: Help!!! Getting nervous about surgery/general anesthesia

My son had 2 inguinal hernia repairs done before age 5. He was under general anesthesia for them. You should be able to go back to the OR with your DD and be able to go back to recovery as soon as she starts waking up, so that she won't have memories of you not being there. Make sure to explain her needs to the staff when you arrive. I would also ask about pain medication so that you have it available. My DS only took a few doses, but it's good to have. Little kids bounce back and heal very quickly. We've been through surgeries 4 times already. I don't tell my DS too far in advance so that he doesn't spend a lot of time worrying. 2 days is probably good. We explain in very simple terms and focus on the positive outcome of having the surgery and that we will be with him. He has never expressed any memories of us not being with him and does not even remember the mask used to give anesthesia, even though he cries about it. Anesthesia does cause some memory loss which is actually very helpful.
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Old 03-21-2013, 08:01 PM   #5
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Re: Help!!! Getting nervous about surgery/general anesthesia

My son has had 5 surgeries so far. Our children's hospital does not let you be there when kiddo first wakes up unless there are problems. My son does not react to anesthesia well, and so they often come get us since he is back in the recovery room for so long.

Often, when kiddos first wake up, they are super duper confused. DS gets hysterical and NOTHING will calm him. He hits, kicks, screams, throws himself, and is essentially in the biggest meltdown temper tantrum you have ever seen for about 90 minutes or so. We try to hold and comfort him, but eventually, we aren't strong enough even with DH and I passing him back and forth, and he has to be laid on the bed. It is frustrating, but totally normal. I don't want to scare you, but just to let you know that if this happens, it is not out of the range of normal. Some kids wake up totally fine. It just depends on the kid and the medical cocktail.

While in recovery, kiddo will have a one-on-one nurse, and if there are issues, two or three nurses look after him. Once kiddo wakes up a little more and oxygen levels stabilize, you get moved back to your room. She won't remember any of it. The drugs are what make her freak out, but they also are enough that she won't remember it.

Did you get your wisdom teeth out? When I did mine, I walked under my own steam from the surgery suite to the recovery room. My mom says I told her all kinds of crazy stuff. Don't remember a single bit of it! Kiddo's experience will be kinda like that.

It isn't fun, but it isn't that big a deal, either. As far as pain meds, sometimes DS got IV meds, but most of the time, they have just done tylenol with codiene.

Ask the doc for stool softeners if you are on pain meds for long, since they can be constipating.
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Old 03-22-2013, 09:45 AM   #6
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You guys are the best! Thank you for all of your help and info... I'm going to try to make it a fun thing... We'll go buy new pjs to wear after and a new lovey... I think she'll get through it fine... I'm sure I'm more worried than she is.
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Old 03-22-2013, 11:04 PM   #7
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My son is 20 months old and has been sedated 4 times the first 3 were done with LMA instead of being intubated which is a lot safer. The last he had to intubated because he had his adenoids removed which is done through his mouth. I was really scared about the intubation doing damage (which can happen but is rare) but everything came out fine. Also my son freaked out every time he's woke up and twice I was with him before he was awake. Children usually do get real confused when they wake. I would talk to the doctor about maybe trying to do LMA. Here's a link so you can see what it is. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laryngeal_mask_airway
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Old 03-22-2013, 11:10 PM   #8
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Parkersmommy- thank you so much for sharing your son's experiences. The nurse I talked to said that they were doing LMA. Thank you so much for bringing up that term, I could not for the life of remember it!

Hopefully everything will be okay... I talked to her about it and she's just excited for the Popsicle and juice
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Old 03-22-2013, 11:20 PM   #9
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One more thing. One sedation was an MRI. One was a double Inguinal hernia repair at 10 weeks old and one was to fix his eyes form crossing at 15 months and both of those all he had was Tylenol. When he had his adenoids removed at 18 months old he got two doses of morphine and when the nurse came to give him another I told her no that I wanted her to give him the oral med the oral meds the doctor ordered for him. She looked at me like I was crazy but did it anyway. He got Tylenol with codine and only had I think 3 doses of that then it was just regular Tylenol.

I would maybe ask to see if you can get an RX but I would try and see if Tylenol would world be enough first. Hope this helps and good luck!!
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