Anesthesia Referral Guide

Anesthesia Referral Guide

Traditionally, most veterinarians and clients consider referring a beloved pet for consult to see a primary specialty service at SAGE Veterinary Centers. It is certainly true that sending a patient for specialty care for a workup and/or procedure with surgery, neurology, internal medicine, oncology, cardiology, etc. is absolutely paramount in working with you as a team to provide top quality care for our furry companions! However, there are also many cases that may benefit from referral in order to access our anesthesia service. We are now proudly able to offer individualized anesthesia care for:

  • Clients who are especially concerned for anesthesia in their pet
  • Patients with a history of an unusual or abnormal anesthetic event
  • Anesthesia for patients with comorbidities:
      • Cardiac
      • Airway/Pulmonary
      • Renal
      • Hepatic
  • Post-operative analgesia and continued care for cases that need critical care.

There are too numerous examples to provide an exhaustive list on this document, but here are a few examples:

  • De-sexing
    • Severely affected brachycephalic
    • Patient with heart condition where clients elect not to pursue further cardiac treatment (PDA, stenonsis – pulmonic, aortic)
    • Patient with medically managed microvascular dysplasia/PSS
  • Mass removal
    • Senior patient with cardiac valvular regurgitation
  • Dental prophylaxis
    • Patient with chronic renal disease, cardiac disease, etc.


Role of an Anesthesiologist:

Our role is to promote the highest standards of anesthesia and analgesia care n veterinary patients. We have additional advanced training and certification in this specialty field of veterinary medicine, including a minimum 3-year residency program after becoming a veterinarian. Our role in private specialty practice includes evaluating patients and their medical history prior to anesthesia and recommending any stabilization/additional management before anesthesia. We are also involved in formulating an overall anesthetic plan, including peri-anesthetic medications and monitoring. Our aim is also to manage intraoperative pain, including locoregional anesthesia and constant rate infusions and aim to prevent, diagnose, and manage any anesthesia-related events during the procedure. For the post-operative period, we are also able to advise on additional pain management protocols if necessary. A large part of our role includes ensuring patient safety and comfort as well as the training and educating our support staff on anesthesia-analgesia management and related topics.

How to refer a patient?

All referrals will still go to a primary specialty, who will then coordinate anesthesia services to be provided by a board-certified/residency trained anesthesiologist. For example, a mass removal would be referred to the surgery department. A hemoabdomen who is in critical condition would come in through the Emergency Department.

Transfer a copy of the patient medical records when scheduling the appointment, including any recent/additional diagnostic test results for the specific condition of concern. 



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