Anesthesia focused on your comfort and safety

Anesthesiology at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Milton

Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Milton's anesthesiologists are committed to your comfort during surgery and through your recovery. Our team includes highly trained anesthesiologists and certified registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

Whether you’re having an elective procedure or facing emergency surgery, we’ll help prepare you and keep you pain-free during your operation. Our specialists work with you before, during and after your procedure.

Billing Information

Anesthesiology care is separate from other surgical care. You’ll receive a separate bill for your anesthesiologist’s services.

Types of Anesthesia

General Anesthesia

During major operations, like abdominal surgery, you’re likely to receive general anesthesia. It usually involves giving you medication through an intravenous (IV) line. The medication puts you in a deep sleep. You will not be conscious during surgery.

Local Anesthesia

Your anesthesiologist may suggest local anesthesia for minor surgery. It involves a shot that numbs part of your body and stops pain for a time.

Monitored Anesthesia Care (MAC)

MAC delivers anesthesia through your vein during the procedure. The anesthesia makes you feel relaxed and sleepy. Your provider may adjust the medication during treatment.

If you plan to receive MAC, a member of the anesthesia team will make sure you’re a good candidate. This evaluation may take place the day of, or the day before, surgery.

Regional Anesthesia

Regional anesthesia numbs the area of your body where surgeons will operate. It involves injecting medication around nerves. You may be sleeping during your surgery, but breathing on your own with some oxygen. This is a type of deep sedation.

  • Peripheral nerve blocks involve an injection of local anesthesia around a nerve or group of nerves. They cause a temporary loss of sensation, but long-lasting pain relief. Anesthesiologists often give nerve blocks with other types of medication.
  • Spinal blocks involve injecting a numbing medication around the nerves that supply the lower legs. The medication numbs your body from the waist down and prevents you from moving your legs. Anesthesiologists will often give other medications alongside this.

Preparing for Elective Surgery: Frequently Asked Questions

I’m having outpatient surgery. Can I drive myself home?

No. You must arrange for a responsible adult to take you home. We don’t allow you to go home in a taxi, via the RIDE, or in a ride service, such as Uber or Lyft, unless a responsible adult accompanies you. (This does not include the service driver.) If you don’t have a safe way to get home, we must cancel your surgery.

What should I do on the day of surgery?

If you have any of the following symptoms the day of your surgery — or in the days or weeks leading up to your surgery — please contact your surgeon's office:

  • Cold or flu symptoms
  • COVID-19 symptoms or recent exposure
  • Drainage from your eye
  • Fever
  • Productive cough
  • Sore Throat

If you arrive at the hospital with any of these symptoms, your surgery may be cancelled.

  • Please follow any instructions your surgeon gives you regarding preparing your skin.
  • Don't wear jewelry, makeup or body lotion. Also, please remove any body piercings before arriving at the hospital.
  • Bring any items you may need at the hospital, such as your sleep apnea machine, brace or surgical girdle with you. Also, bring a photo identification (ID) and a health care proxy, if you've completed one.
  • Leave cash and valuables at home. The hospital is not responsible for lost items.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing.
When should I stop eating and drinking before surgery?
  • Do not eat anything, including gum or mints, after midnight the night before surgery.
  • If you don’t have diabetes, we encourage you to drink up to 20 ounces of Gatorade or Powerade, as instructed, on the morning of surgery. However, you should consume this liquid no later than two hours before your hospital arrival time. (If your surgery is early in the morning, you may drink the fluid in the late evening.) If you have diabetes, please drink water rather than Powerade or Gatorade. Be sure to review and follow any advice your surgeon provides.
  • If you have diabetes and develop low blood sugar, you may take glucose gel or drink four ounces of clear apple juice. Do not take glucose tablets.
  • You may brush your teeth and use mouthwash, but please don’t swallow anything.
  • Take approved medications with a small sip of water.
Do I take my normal medications before surgery?

Your surgeon and/or our pre-admission staff will talk with you about medicines you should and should not take the day of surgery.


  • For seven days before surgery, please don’t take pain relievers that may increase the risk of bleeding. These include ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil); naproxen (Aleve); and celecoxib (Celebrex).
  • If you have diabetes, follow any instructions regarding taking or adjusting the dose of your insulin or other diabetes medications.
  • If you take blood thinners, be sure to get instructions from your surgeon’s office or the doctor who prescribed the medication. You shouldn’t stop taking blood thinners unless you are specifically told to stop.
  • If you take daily aspirin for heart disease or to prevent blood clots, continue taking it unless your surgeon tells you not to.

If you have any questions about the medications you take, don’t hesitate to ask your surgeon or the pre-admission staff.

What does pre-admission testing involve?

Before surgery, you’ll have a brief call with a pre-admission nurse. In some cases, a 60-minute telehealth visit with a nurse practitioner may be necessary, as well. These visits allow us to receive and share important information. Our coordinator will contact you to set up these appointments.

The coordinator also will schedule a COVID-19 test. You must complete this test 48–72 hours before your surgery date. If you miss this appointment, we may have to cancel or reschedule your surgery.

Please have the following information available for your call with our nurse:

  • A list of all medications you take, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter-medicines, vitamins, supplements and medical marijuana.
  • A list of your allergies.
  • Details about any implanted devices in your body, such as pacemakers or nerve stimulators.
What will happen when I get to the hospital?

Once at the hospital, you’ll meet your pre-operative nurse. The nurse will get you ready for surgery by helping you change into a hospital gown and starting an IV. The nurse can answer any questions you might have. Be sure to provide information about how to reach your family or other support person, so they can be notified when your surgery is over.

Members of your surgery team will come to your bedside to meet you. Different people may ask you the same questions. Some of the questions may seem silly. They’re meant to help keep you safe. Please answer the questions completely, even if you think we have the information.

Just before surgery, we may give you medicine to help you relax. It may make you sleepy and lightheaded. For your safety, please don’t get up from your bed. Your nurse will be happy to help with any needs you may have.

Once your surgery team is ready, we’ll move you to the operating room. We make every effort to stay on schedule. Please be aware that your surgery could be delayed for a variety of reasons. We do our best to keep you comfortable and informed.

When should I arrive at the hospital and where do I go?

The scheduling office will call you between 2:00 pm and 4:00 pm one business day before your operation. They’ll tell you what time to arrive for surgery.

On the day of surgery, enter the hospital at the Highland Street lobby entrance. Report to the Surgical Services desk.

Services & Specialties

Our anesthesiology team is dedicated to keeping you safe and comfortable. These service lines also may play an important role in your treatment and recovery.