Advanced Anesthesia and Comprehensive Pain Management
We are pleased to be affiliated with Dr. Heidi Shafford of Veterinary Anesthesia Specialists. As one of only a handful of board-certified veterinary anesthesiologists working in private practice, Dr. Shafford helps us maintain an exceptional anesthesia and pain management service.
Appropriate anesthesia and pain management are critical to a successful procedure and rapid recovery. We know that you may be concerned about anesthesia and pain management provided during and after your pet's procedure. At VSO, every pet undergoing surgery receives:
- A thorough pre-anesthetic evaluation, including appropriate testing and laboratory analyses to better understand patient health before surgery
- An individualized anesthetic and pain management plan designed to minimize risk of anesthetic complications and to maximize patient comfort
- A certified veterinary technician (nurse) dedicated exclusively to monitoring each pet's vital signs and providing support prior to, during, and following anesthesia
- Intravenous fluids, ventilator support, and intensive monitoring that includes blood pressures, pulse oximetry, expired carbon dioxide concentrations, and ECG (arterial blood gas analysis is also performed as needed)
- Analgesic therapy before, during and after surgery
- Advanced anesthesia and pain management techniques, including, when appropriate, epidural anesthetics, constant rate infusions, and local and incisional blocks
Dr. Shafford is directly involved in patient care when indicated by findings of our pre-anesthetic evaluation, or by your request. She is also available to provide on-call support for our certified technicians should questions arise during more routine anesthetic cases.
At Veterinary Surgery & Orthopedics, we encourage owners to be involved in maximizing post-operative pain relief for their pets. Pet owner education and follow-up after surgery are integral parts of our practice. Home care is advocated, whenever possible, to reduce patient stress and to aid in recovery from anesthesia and surgery. Our pain treatment recommendations are guided by results of pre- and post-surgical evaluations, the type of procedure performed and severity of pain expected, and your observations about your pet's behavior. Recommended treatments for pain following surgery may include analgesic and other medications, rest and restricted activity, and physical therapy. Our veterinary nurses receive ongoing training in advanced anesthesia and pain management, and are available to answer any questions you may have during the recovery period. Pain management consultations are available with Dr. Shafford upon request.