• Northern Illawarra Veterinary Hospital

Is an anaesthetic safe for my geriatric pet?

Updated: May 20, 2020

As with all anaesthetics there is risk involved, however there are measures that can be taken to minimise risk especially in older patients. Blood testing prior to an anaesthetic will help identify any underlying medical conditions that may place your geriatric pet at greater risk during an anaesthetic. Often even if there is underlying conditions an anaesthetic is still possible with extra precautions. Intravenous fluids are also important during an anaesthetic in a geriatric patient. Fluids provide support to their renal function which in older patients if often insufficient. It can also assist in maintaining blood pressure of an anaesthetised patient. Patient monitoring is crucial in ensuring a safer anaesthetic. Proper monitoring equipment provides information on how the patient is coping with the anaesthetic whilst they are asleep and changes can be made accordingly. Gaseous anaesthetic is used to keep the patient asleep after the initial induction. This is the safest form of anaesthetic available as it is breathed off by the patient once disconnected from the anaesthetic machine. So in a word yes! We are able to make an anaesthetic as safe as possible for your geriatric pet!