Anaesthesia is necessary for most surgical procedures in children. The reasons for giving anaesthesia are:

  1. The child must be asleep through the operation
  2. The child must not experience any pain during the procedure.
  3. There should be absence of pain and discomfort after the operation

Generally, these objectives are achieved by using a combination of general and regional anaesthesia.

General anaesthesia ensures that the child is asleep. Regional anaesthesia means that a special injection, given at a determined spot, can take away the pain from a particular part of the body. An example of regional anaesthesia is the epidural block that is used for painless labour. For hypospadias, regional anaesthesia is given using a “caudal block”. Here, a space near the tail bone can admit a needle which can access a space near the spinal cord, and temporarily numb the nerves going towards the pelvis.

A caudal block is extensively used in children’s surgery and is safe.

You can get more details of the type of anaesthesia by having a discuss=ion with the anaesthesiologist who will be present at surgery. Please bear in mind that he/she is an expert in this field, and will choose the safest and most effective method of anaesthesia for your child.