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SurreyGirl

General Anaesthetic (gas) When Gluten Free

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My son (age 15), gluten sensitive is due to have a mole removed on the face and after much debating the docs decided to use gas. We are due to have a pre-op meeting in the next 2 weeks and op at the e/Jan.

Does anyone have any experience of this? Will he be affected more (I think he might be) - or less?

Of course I will be asking the docs in case any injections are used for them to be gluten free, but I am also a little concerned about the anaesthetics effect on his recovering brain.

Does anyone know how these things work inside the body, more specifically the neurological system?

How will he be affected afterwards? Will he bounce back straightaway?

Is there anything I need to do (as in alternative/supportive) options to help recovery?

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I am in my fifties, so my physiology is probably rather different from your son's. I had general anesthesia for day surgery in September, 2005. I had been gluten-free for five years at that point. I told the anesthesiologist about my celiac disease and diabetes. The celiac was a non-issue, but she did spend some time discussing blood sugar levels, insulin dosage, and the possible need for IV glucose if my sugar level dropped while under her care.

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The gas itself should not be an issue. Other meds may be though. Make sure you talk to the anesthesiologist and to your doctor. If they give him something to relax him before surgery make really, really sure it is gluten-free. Many doctors will prescribe Xantac nowadays which has no gluten free formula available. Make sure to get the script or the name of any drugs they will give him by mouth and check yourself to be sure. Check by calling or emailing the company not by trusting gluten-free lists or your pharmacist. The biggest risk is generics but not all name brands are safe either.

I have not found an injectable that is not gluten free but anything by mouth needs to be checked.

That said this sounds like a low risk sort of procedure that should go through without any problems. There is always a bit of a risk with any surgery, and for celiacs that are NOT on the diet it can cause an increase in symptoms. If he has been on the diet for a while the celiac should not be an issue as long as they don't gluten him with an oral med.

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My son is 14, and has had 4 'scopes in the years he has been gluten-free, all of them (obviously) involving a general anesthesia. He had no ill effects at all, and I would not (if I were you) worry "extra" about that part. I would ask to see the ingredient list of anything they want to give him prior to or during the procedure. (If you ask if it's gluten free, they will say yes. Whether they actually know, or not.) I used to say "would you please bring me the ingredient panel for the prep solution?" Don't say "could you" or "can I please" --- it is your right to see it, and just be polite-but-firm. Shouldn't be a problem. When they say "Oh, we're sure it's right" just laugh and do that "Oh, I know, but Id really like to see it myself. Even a photocopy will be great".

General anesthetics leave you sleepy and groggy after they have "worn off" but are pretty safe. Coming out of it, kids often thrash and yell, but it's harmless to them (although it's pretty freaky for you!). Sometimes the first time a person is put under, they will throw up when they are coming out, but any competent medical staff will be anticipating that possibility.

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