On 22 May I had elbow surgery at the Spire Hospital in Harpenden. The anaesthetist was Dr Saravanan Rathinam . Despite reading all of the really helpful information on general anaesthetics on the Royal College of Anaesthetists website I was still anxious about whether I would regain consciousness, whether I would be able to feel the surgery but not tell anyone I was still conscious, and whether it would be really disorientating. I couldn’t think about it rationally or sensibly and was having sleepless nights worrying about the general anaesthetic and counting the days down with dread until the surgery. When the day arrived, I was very upset. I even momentarily thought about not going through with the operation. As it turns out I needn’t have worried. Dr Rathinam was extremely reassuring, kind, empathetic and professional. He came to see me before the surgery and answered all of my questions carefully and thoughtfully. Once in the anaesthetic induction room he explained everything he was doing and before I knew it I was in recovery coming round! I don’t remember going off to sleep and the recovery was nothing like I imagined, just a gentle feeling of floating (certainly no nausea). Within 2.5 hours I had been anaesthetised, had elbow surgery, come round and was back in my room. To be honest I don’t know why I had wasted so much time worrying in the weeks beforehand. Dr Rathinam also came to see me a few hours later when I was back in my room which I thought was really thoughtful. I would highly recommend him. I should also add that the elbow surgery was done by Mr Tony Corner. He was fantastic and again exceptionally reassuring.
Last weekend I was booked into St Albans Ciry hospital for a partial knee replacement and had been told that although I had the choice, consultants there favour use of a spinal block over general anaesthetic. Despite my huge fear about this method (who would relish the idea of an injection into one’s spine?) I could see that avoiding that sick, swimmy head post surgery would be good. Dr Rathinam explained to me in detail what would happen and this put me at my ease. When I went down to theatre and met him again in the anaesthetic room he was chatty and smiley and again, told me exactly what was happening. When the dreaded moment came I felt a mild stinging of the local anaesthetic going in but when he administered the block I genuinely felt nothing other than a bit of pressure. I remember thinking ‘this can’t be it’ but it was! Once in theatre he administer the sedative and off to sleep I went. I did become conscious whilst still in surgery and, far from freaking me out, it was interesting and comforting hearing the team chatting between themselves and having a brief exchange with the surgeon. It all felt amazingly normal. The screen was dropped and I saw some poor guy with a huge sausage leg over his shoulder and it took a moment to register that it was my leg! Absolutely no feeling connecting me and it - weird. Recovery was quick and in no time I was heading back to the ward for a cup of tea and a ham sandwich. Flipping brilliant. If this guy is your anaesthetist, have no worries. He’s top class with the perfect pitch of friendliness and professionalism and is a dab hand at administering spinal blocks.
I have had a number of operations over the years in a number of different hospitals and I can say that the latest operation when Dr Rathinam was the Anasthetist was the most relaxing and least stressful of all. He explained all the options at my bedside prior to the surgery , in a simple and easy to understand way. He gave me complete confidence from the outset. Afterwards there were no side effects from the Anasthetics used during the operation I would be more than happy to have him again if needed.
I have always had bad experiences with anasthetics with bad reactions afterwards and was not looking forward to a simple procedure which required sedation. Dr Rathinam took time to listen to my concerns and reassured me that he felt I would be fine with what he was planning. He was right. I woke up and other than feeling expectedly sleepy had absolutely no other side effects. I was so grateful. I appreciated the time he took to listen and the care he took with my treatment. I'm would definately recommend him.
Dr Saravanan Rathinam was fantastic I can not express how good he was. I was a mess totally scared of having my epidural, I was having my 3rd c-section in my 3rd hospital and after having horrendous experience in kings and lister I was dreading this one. But to my amazement this time it couldn't of gone any better there wasn't any pain, he spoke to me the whole time told me step by step what he was doing and with in 5 mins it was in, compared to the first time at kings which took about 15 mins and they rammed it in and 25 mins in lister where on both occasions I was in excruciating pain. Dr Saravanan Rathinam was totally amazing couldn't of been any nicer made me feel at ease he had a very calming way and is brilliant at his job. In fact his whole team where great from the young lady Sally El-Ghazali who was very kind to me and even came and checked on me a couple of times after my opp to the other young man who was showing me how to bend my back the right way to then be able to get the needle in. Also the man preformed the c-section was great. The lady's that get this team in the future when having their c-sections are very lucky and in the best hands that they can be in. I would recommend this team anytime 10/10 all day long.
Short link to review Dr Saravanan Rathinam: http://iwgc.net/ef8iq