The Greenwich Hospital Department of Anesthesiology is comprised of board-certified anesthesiologists and certified registered nurse anesthetists affiliated with Greenwich Anesthesiology Associates, P.C. The team specializes in many aspects of anesthetic management, including pediatric, obstetrical, regional and thoracic anesthesia, as well as critical care and pain management.
Our anesthesiology staff is involved in all aspects of surgical care, including preoperative evaluation, monitoring patients during surgery, and afterward in the recovery room. These specialists perform a wide range of procedures in all three main categories of anesthesia:
Anesthesiology During Labor and Delivery
General Anesthesia. General anesthesia is an anesthetic used to induce unconsciousness during surgery. The medication is either inhaled through a breathing mask or tube, or administered through an intravenous line (a thin plastic tube inserted into a vein, usually in the patient's forearm). A breathing tube may be inserted into the windpipe to maintain proper breathing during surgery. Once the surgery is complete, the anesthesiologist stops the anesthetic and the patient wakes up in the recovery room.
Regional Anesthesia. Regional anesthesia is used to numb only the portion of the body where the surgery is performed. Usually an injection of local anesthetic is given in the area of nerves that provide feeling to that part of the body. There are several forms of regional anesthetics, including “epidural,” which is used during labor and childbirth.
Local Anesthesia. Local anesthesia is given to temporarily stop the sense of pain in a particular area of the body. The anesthetic drug is usually injected into the skin to numb only the location of the body requiring minor surgery. The patient remains conscious during a local anesthetic.
While many women choose a nonmedicated labor and delivery, anesthesia can be provided, based on the woman's wishes and her physician's recommendation. Anesthesia options include:
Local. This series of local injections can make you more comfortable for delivery and for the placement of sutures if you need them.
Sedation. Administered as an injection or intravenously, narcotics or tranquilizers can help reduce the discomfort of labor but will not eliminate the pain entirely. They are also used to ease the anxiety that sometimes accompanies the delivery process.
Regional. Called a pudendal block, this is a local anesthetic that numbs the vaginal area in preparation for delivery.
Epidural. An epidural is a local anesthetic delivered through a tiny tube called a catheter, which is placed in the small of the back, just outside the spinal canal. An epidural allows most women to fully participate in the birth experience (continuing to feel touch and pressure) while relieving most, if not all, of the pains of labor.
Spinal. This anesthetic is similar to an epidural, but because it is administered with a needle into the spinal fluid, its effects are felt much faster.
Anesthesia during childbirth will be administered by a specialist affiliated with Greenwich Anesthesiology Associates. An anesthesiologist is available to discuss pain management options before your admission to the hospital and while you are here.
Learn more about Maternity Services at Greenwich Hospital
Other Specialized Services
Specialized services provided by the Department of Anesthesiology include:
• Anesthetic care for surgical procedures
• Anesthetic care in labor and delivery for labor and cesarean section
• Specialized techniques of regional anesthesia
• Advanced peripheral nerve blocks for postoperative pain management
• Sedation for services outside of the operating rooms including endoscopy, radiology, cardiology, bronchoscopy and emergency room
• Consultation for airway management throughout the hospital
• Interventional pain management through the Sackler Center for Pain Management