Paediatric anaesthesia

When you arrive with your child at the hospital for an operation or test that requires anaesthesia you will all want to know a bit about what’s in store. For most anaesthetists this is their regular work but we try not to forget that for most people this is an important day – one they’ll remember for most of their life.

Paediatric anaesthetists look after children having surgery and other procedures such as MRI scans. In Southampton in 2008 we gave over 4000 anaesthetics covering a wide range of surgery including eyes, ear nose and throat, dental, orthopaedics, general and cancer surgery. We look after all sizes from tiny babies as small as 500g to 16 year-olds.

Children come for surgery in Southampton from a huge area; Dorchester and Yeovil to the West to Chichester in the East, the Isle of Wight to the South and Basingstoke and Frimley to the North.
Over 80% of our work is in day surgery – over 3300 anaesthetics were given in 2008.  Day patients usually come to the John Atwell Day Ward on G Level. Most of the other children’s wards are on G level too; G3 (orthopaedics), G4 (general surgery), G4 nephro (urology) and Piam Brown (cancer care). We have specialist children’s nurses in all these areas.

Children having heart surgery and brain surgery are looked after in those units separately.

Find out more about what happens when you come in and our services.