Anesthesia (Monitored Anesthesia Care, MAC)

Overview

Monitored anesthesia care is a type of anesthesia that makes the patient feel very relaxed. It reduces painful sensations and the awareness of pain. It is not intended to put the patient to sleep, and will wear off quickly after a procedure. Monitored anesthesia care is commonly used for simple procedures that can be completed quickly.

Patient Care and Safety

The type and amount of anesthesia used depends on the patient's need. An anesthesia provider will consider the patient’s health, medication use, allergies, medical history and past use of anesthesia to decide what is best for the patient. The patient will be monitored closely throughout the procedure.

Delivering the Anesthesia

Anesthesia may be given to the patient through a needle or an IV. The amount of anesthesia delivered depends on the medical procedure. Some patients feel relaxed and groggy but are awake for the entire procedure and can respond to questions and commands. Other patients may fall into a light sleep, but they can be awakened during the procedure if needed. The anesthesia provider watches the patient’s vital signs and adjusts the anesthesia to keep the patient safe and comfortable. The patient will not remember pain from the procedure.

After the Procedure

When the anesthesia wears off, some side effects are common. Patients may feel sleepy and confused. They may have a headache or feel nauseous. These symptoms usually go away quickly.

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