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There are two types of anesthesia that can be used for your child’s procedure:
Spinal anesthesia (spinal block)
This technique involves giving numbing medicine into the spinal fluid. This is done through a single injection in the back with a small needle. It will cause the patient to be numb from the waist down and it lasts for about 1 ½ hours.
To make this process easy for your child, numbing cream will be applied to the skin. Your child may also be given medicine to relax. With this approach, infants do not need general anesthetic or a breathing tube. Babies will often fall asleep on their own. In most cases, this method results in a faster recovery.
A spinal block may be preferred for premature infants or those who have severe breathing problems.
This involves using medicines to put your baby to sleep. In most cases, it requires a breathing tube to help infants breathe. At the end of surgery, the breathing tube is removed, and your baby will wake up in the recovery room.
Making the Choice
Both methods will keep your baby pain-free and safe. Serious complications with either method are rare. One method may be preferred based on your child’s health history. The anesthesiologist will review your child’s health record and discuss the options with you.