Will I wake up doc?
Having done all preparations for smoothly, safely and comfortably putting my patient to sleep, I was jolted out of my clinical thoughts by his question” Will I wake up doctor?”.
Being a cardiac anesthesiologist, I realize the stress and anxiety most of my patient’s experience before going for any cardiac surgery. To explain everything that they will see until I put them off to a welcome sleep is a clinical necessity. However, on the morning of surgery, many a fear comes back for some, in spite of counseling and anti-anxiety medication. Having realized that I will be the last and only person to talk to for the patient before sleeping, has made me more patient, empathetic and reassuring. And each time I really appreciate the medicines I have at my disposal to make the process of surgery so safe, comfortable and agreeable for both the surgeon and the patient. While they sleep, I am on my clinical feet, balancing the depth and safety of anesthetic medicines with the surgical comfort of the surgeon and a pleasant sleep for the patient and to make sure the reassurance I give before surgery stands true.
There is a lot that goes in to wake the patient up the way I want; with a smile on the face and peace and satisfaction in the eyes. And that to me is a reward immeasurable.