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If you are scheduled for surgery, you may have questions about anesthesia and pain control. Our goal at the Stanford Preoperative Anesthesia Evaluation Clinic is to give you all the information you need to set your mind at ease about the safety of anesthesia and relief of post-surgical discomfort.
As national leaders in preoperative anesthesia evaluation, our doctors work with medically complex and/or frail patients that other providers may decline to treat. We work with thousands of patients each year including many who travel to us from around the country and the world.
We go far beyond the usual history and physical to thoroughly evaluate your medical history and conditions before you have surgery. You can access our services at multiple convenient locations in the Bay Area.
Anesthesia Preoperative Evaluation Clinic at Stanford Hospital
At the Stanford Anesthesia Preoperative Evaluation Clinic, we perform a comprehensive review of your past medical history, assess your current health status and obtain any additional testing we feel is required to help keep you safe during anesthesia.
If you have undergone a preoperative anesthesia examination in the past, you may be expecting a brief physical evaluation and an order for an EKG test. We go well beyond this brief exam. Our goal is to determine your readiness for anesthesia and create an individualized plan that tells you exactly what you need to do in the days and hours leading up to your surgery.
Preparing for Your Anesthesia Evaluation Appointment
Your surgeon will schedule your appointment with our clinic. If you have any test results or medical records from your primary care physician, cardiologist, or other physician for your upcoming surgical procedure in anesthesia, please bring them with you so we can review them during your visit.
Anesthesia Evaluation: What to Expect
Start by checking in at the front desk. Our friendly staff will assist you with any questions.
Here’s what to expect during your appointment:
You will undergo a brief physical examination by a specially trained anesthesia nurse practitioner or an anesthesiology resident physician. These professionals will perform a chart review with you and obtain a detailed medical history.
One of our anesthesiologists will talk with you about your medical history, clarify any test results and determine if you would benefit from additional testing prior to your surgery. If so, the Anesthesia Preoperative Evaluation Clinic will make any required appointments for you before you leave our facility.
Our anesthesia team may discuss various anesthesia options available to you. These may include combinations such as conscious sedation with a regional nerve block, for example. We encourage you to ask any questions you may have about these different types of anesthesia.
One of our nurse practitioners or an anesthesiologist will discuss with you what to expect on the day of surgery. We want you and your family to understand exactly how the day will unfold. We welcome your questions about post-operative pain management so you know what to expect when you wake up.
If you have not already received instructions from your surgeon regarding how to adjust your medications and when to stop eating before surgery, we will provide you with a detailed care plan that covers:
What medications to take normally
Which medications to stop taking – and when to stop taking them
What you may eat prior to surgery
When to stop eating and drinking before surgery
Any special medications you will need to take before surgery, along with instructions about exactly how to take them
Transportation arrangements you will need to get to and from the hospital
We will answer absolutely all of your questions. We want you to feel confident and prepared for your surgery by the time you leave your appointment.
Learn more about the doctors at the Anesthesia Preoperative Evaluation Clinic.
Depending on your individual needs, your preoperative assessment visit may last between 30 and 60 minutes. It may take a little longer if we need to telephone one of your providers to clarify your medical history.
If you need additional preoperative testing we may be able to arrange a same-day appointment at another clinic.
Stanford Health Care is known worldwide for the advanced patient care provided by its doctors and staff. We also provide a wide range of guest services and amenities to our patients and visitors. Learn more about preparing for a hospital stay, billing and financial services, and our other support programs in Patients & Visitors.
We plan to perform a very thorough assessment of your readiness for anesthesia. You can help us in this process by obtaining past and current medical records, test results and films. When we have access to all of this information, we may be able to avoid sending you for additional testing.
Anesthesia Evaluation: What to Bring
Please bring the following to your anesthesia evaluation appointment, if you have them:
Laboratory test results
Cardiac test results, including ECG and stress test results
Contact information for your physician(s)
If you have questions about whether or not you should bring a particular document or test result, please do bring it with you.
You may hand carry these items to your appointment to the clinic where you will have your preoperative evaluation or fax them in advance.
At Stanford, we work with medically complex and frail patients other anesthesia providers decline to treat. While many anesthesia providers won’t evaluate a patient until a surgery date is set, we will see high-risk patients for a consult-only appointment in advance to determine if they meet the necessary criteria to receive anesthesia.
HOW TO REFER
Fax a referral form with supporting documentation to 650-320-9443.
Stanford Health Care provides comprehensive services to refer and track patients, as well as the latest information and news for physicians and office staff. For help with all referral needs and questions, visit Referring Physicians.
At Stanford we understand sometimes even the sickest patients require non-emergent surgery to extend their life or improve their quality of life. If you have questions about your patient’s readiness for anesthesia, or if another provider has declined to treat your patient, the Stanford Anesthesia Preoperative Evaluation Clinic will evaluate your high-risk patients and make recommendations regarding how to prepare them for anesthesia
Schedule a High-Risk Consult-only Appointment
Surgeons and other providers may make an appointment directly with any of the four Stanford Anesthesia Preoperative Evaluation Clinic locations. Please advise your patients about what to expect and what to bring with them to their appointment.
What if My Patient Does Not Meet the Criteria for Anesthesia?
If we find your patient is not a candidate for anesthesia, we will work with them to optimize their health to prepare them for anesthesia. We offer:
In-patient optimization for patients that need intensive support
Nutrition counseling when baseline health needs a boost
Other supportive services as required on a per-case basis
Frequent communication with the patient’s surgeon and other medical clinicians to keep everyone informed of the individual’s progress
Track your patients' progress and communicate with Stanford providers securely online.