Preoperative Evaluation and Stabilization
The success of a surgical procedure depends on preoperative preparation, intraoperative management and postoperative care. Some complications that occur during anesthesia can be related to preoperative stabilization. Prior to having anesthesia, it is important that the pet is as stable as possible with regards to the cardiovascular, respiratory and renal systems.
The anesthesia team evaluates your pet by performing a physical examination and reviewing lab work and diagnostic imaging tests such as x-rays and ultrasound. In many cases, the pet will need IV fluids for some time prior to anesthesia in order to stabilize them, especially if they have been vomiting, are anorexic, have had some blood loss, or have kidney disease.
In other cases, the pet may have air or fluid in the chest, or fluid in the abdomen that may need to be removed prior to anesthesia; otherwise, the pet will have difficulty breathing and oxygenating or difficulty with blood pressure management while under anesthesia.
Sometimes a pet may need a transfusion of blood or plasma to stabilize them prior to surgery.