General anaesthetic and prostate surgery [video]

Video author: Streaming Well
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Video Transcript

Streaming Well

Is it essential to have a general anaesthetic during prostate surgery?

Mr. Christopher Eden, Consultant Urologist: Prostate surgery can be performed and usually is performed under a general anaesthetic, but for a variety of reasons including patient preference, it can be performed with a spinal anaesthetic. This is an injection into the back which causes patients to be numb from the waist down. The principle benefit of spinal anaesthesia, in other words avoiding a general anaesthetic, is in patients who have impaired lung function. So if you've got a particular problem such as emphysema, bronchiectesis, or for particularly large patients who may find it difficult postoperatively to breath, it may be beneficial then to have a spinal anaesthetic.

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