How is the anaesthetic administered?

Children usually require a general anaesthetic (GA) to allow a procedure to occur safely. Occasionally, older children may be suitable for sedation for short simple procedures. A general anaesthetic is a mixture of medicines to ensure your child is unconscious during the procedure. The anaesthetic can be started by placing a cannula into one of the veins of the arm or hand and then giving medicine through the cannula to go to sleep. Alternatively, anaesthetic gases can be given by a mask to induce sleep, then the cannula is placed after your child is asleep. Your anaesthetist will discuss with you which of these would be most suitable for your child, as sometimes sometimes there are medical reasons why things have to be done in a certain way.

Depending on the type of surgery, the anaesthetist may also discuss with you placing local anaesthetic as a specific nerve block to help your child wake up comfortably.