2016 National Anaesthesia Day


 National Anaesthesia Day resources for hospitals | Public information videos | Follow us on Facebook 

Did you know that a lot of surgical procedures can be done safely and painlessly while you’re still awake? Regional anaesthesia (also called a "regional block") numbs only the part of the body being operated on. It is often used for mothers having caesarean births; for eye surgery; and for operations on arms and legs.

As this regional anaesthesia factsheet explains, there are some significant benefits to regional anaesthesia, including:

  • Good pain control (including the reduced risk of chronic pain developing after surgery).
  • Faster recovery.
  • Fewer side-effects.
  • Less stress on the body.

In this short video Professor David A Scott, Director of Anaesthesia at St Vincent's Hospital, Melbourne and a recent patient of his discuss the benefits of staying awake during surgery.

Regional anaesthesia can be safer for patients with obesity, or lung disease and for older patients or other patients who are frail. But it is not for every patient and not for every procedure. For example, it may not be suitable for patients having certain kinds of neurosurgery, or as the only form of anaesthesia for abdominal or chest surgery. So always talk to your anaesthetist about your individual situation.

Resources for hospitals and private practices

We have produced a series of resources aimed at helping patients understand the benefits of regional anaesthesia and encouraging them to discuss their options with their anaesthetist. Find out out you and your hospital or private practice can get involved.

About National Anaesthesia Day

Australia and New Zealand traditionally celebrate National Anaesthesia Day on October 16 – the anniversary of the first public demonstration of ether anaesthesia in Boston, Massachusetts in 1846. Here's our President, Professor David A Scott, explaining some of the incredible advaces in anaesthesia over the past 170 years.


Join the conversation on social media

If you have a question about regional anaesthesia, or a story you'd like to share, you can join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #NAD16.

Copyright © Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists.