We provide high quality healthcare services primarily to the residents of East Lancashire and Blackburn with Darwen, which have a combined population in the region of 530,000.
Welcome to the webpage of the Anaesthetics directorate for East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.
What we do
We provide anaesthesia to allow you to undergo operations and procedures in comfort and safety. This may be a local anaesthetic where you remain awake, a local anaesthetic with sedation to make you drowsy or a full general anaesthetic where you will be asleep.
Before your operation you will pre-assessed either in a special clinic or by your anaesthetist on the day. You will be asked questions about your current and past health, medications and appropriate investigations, which may include blood tests, x-ray and a heart tracing, will be ordered. Your anaesthetist will see you before the operation to find out details about your health, test results and any concerns you may have and will work with you to plan your anaesthetic and post-operative pain relief.
After your operation you will be transferred to the Recovery Ward where a team of skilled nurses will look after you until you return to your postoperative ward.
Our aim is to provide safe, personal and effective anaesthetic care to every patient we see. Currently we have a team of 89 doctors who provide anaesthetic services to:-
• Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital
• Burnley General Teaching Hospital
In the last year we provided anaesthetic care to 40,000 patients having operations.
How to access this service
Anaesthetists are doctors who have had specialist training in anaesthesia. You will be referred to our services via the Consultant Surgeon (or other appropriate Healthcare professional) as part of your elective surgical pathway.
Your anaesthetist is responsible for:
• assessing whether you are fit enough to have the anaesthetic for your operation
• talking to you about which type of anaesthetic might be best and getting your permission (consent) for it
• giving the anaesthetic and organising pain control afterwards, and
• looking after you immediately after the operation in the recovery room or in an intensive care unit.
You may come in to contact with Anaesthetic services for the following reasons:
Pre- operative Assessment Clinic and CPET (Cardiopulmonary Exercise) Testing
It is important that your general health is as good as it can be before you have an operation. You will have a full history, examination and appropriate tests, which may include blood tests, x-ray and a heart tracing before you come in for your operation. You will be asked about any medications you are taking so it is a good idea to bring a list of what you take when, with you. You will be given instructions about what medications to take or stop.
This visit is also an opportunity for you to highlight any particular concern or worries you may have. Many clinics are run by trained nurses who will refer you on to an anaesthetist if needed. You will always be seen by an anaesthetist before your operation, most often on the day of the operation.
You may be asked to do a fitness test before you decide that you will have the operation. A fitness test gives information about how risky the operation is for you. This helps you decide whether an operation is right for you. There may be other less risky treatments that would be better for you. The test also helps your surgeon and anaesthetist decide how best to look after you during and after the operation.
The fitness test is usually done on a stationary cycle. You are asked to wear a mask so the team can measure the oxygen that you use and the carbon dioxide that you breathe out.
If you cannot turn the pedals due to problems with your legs, it may be possible to use a machine that you turn with your arms.
Having a baby - Delivery Suite
There is always an anaesthetist in the maternity unit. They provide pain relief services for women in labour which may be epidurals or patient controlled analgesia. They are there to help care for mothers who may experience health problems in labour and to provide anaesthesia for those requiring operative delivery.
Clinical Director: Dr Sarah Clarke (FRCA)
Deputy Clinical Director: Dr Jim Watts (BSc MBChB FRCA FFICM) – Intensive Care
Clinical Director for Intensive Care: Stephen Gilligan (FRCA FFICM) – Intensive Care
General Manager: Mr Leigh Hudson
Anaesthetic Consultants at ELHT:
We have 48 consultants, 4 Associate Specialists, 24 trainees (varied), 11 Specialty Doctors and 2 Senior Clinical Fellows
Specialist Interests: Airway Lead, Hepatobiliary
Specialist Interests: College Tutor, Obstetric, Cardioversion
Specialist Interests: College Tutor, ECT Lead, Obstetrics
Specialist Interests: Obstetric Lead, Robotic Urology, Orthopaedic
Specialist Interests: Vascular, General, Hepatobiliary, Cardiac, Thoracic
Specialist Interests: Obstetrics, Trauma, Orthopaedics, ECT
Specialist Interests: Altitude Physiology, General, Hepatobiliary, Regional Adviser ICM, Deputy Lead RA nationally
Specialist Interests: ACSA Lead, NAP6 Lead, Hepatobiliary, Trauma, Regional Anaesthesia
Specialist Interests: Research Lead, Perioperative Medicine, General
Specialist Interests: Paediatric Lead, Obstetrics
Specialist Interests: Respiratory Medicine
Specialist Interests: Emergency Anaesthesia, Clinical Lead – Deteriorating Patients, Clinical Lead – Sepsis, Quality Improvement
Specialist Interests: General, ECT
Specialist Interests: Urological surgery including robot-assisted, Oral & Maxillo-Facial Surgery, Anaesthesia in the Elderly, General, ECT, ENT.
Post-Graduate Medical Education & past Royal College of Anaesthetists Examiner (national & international).
Specialist Interests: General, Rota master
Specialist Interests: Vascular, General, CPET
Specialist Interests: Obstetric, Vascular, Day Case, Gynaecology
Specialist Interests: Obstetric, General
Specialist Interests: Hepatobiliary, Major Colorectal, CPET
Perioperative Medicine Lead, Perioperative Research, Quality Improvement
Specialist Interests: Obstetric, Trauma, Orthopaedic
Specialist Interests: ENT, General
Less than Full Time Champion for Trainees
Specialist Interests: Remi PCA Lead, Obstetric, Regional Anaesthesia, Orthopaedic, Maxillo-Facial
USSPINE Workshop organiser, NWRAG Link Consultant, Clinical Lead for ePMA development, Manchester Medical Society Section of Anaesthesia council member
Specialist Interests: Audit Lead, Trauma, Orthopaedic, Regional Anaesthesia
Specialist Interests: ECT, Hepatobiliary, General, Echocardiography
Specialist Interests: Paediatric, Simulation for Medical Education, General
Specialist Interests: Trauma, Orthopaedic, Regional Anaesthesia
Specialist Interests: Maxillo-Facial, General
Specialist Interests: Pre-op Assessment, General
Specialist Interests: General, Organ Donation Lead
Specialist Interests: Clinical Governance Lead, Obstetric, Hepatobiliary, General
Primary Investigator for Perioperative Quality Improvement Program PQIP
Specialist Interests: Pre-op Assessment, General, Breast
Specialist Interests: College Tutor (ICM), Simulation, General, Clinical Lead on Learning Disabilities
Specialist Interests: General, Hepatobiliary
Specialist Interests: NELA Lead, General, Urology
UCLAN School of Medicine Undergraduate Simulation Tutor
Specialist Interests: Equipment Lead, Obstetric, Trauma, Regional Anaesthesia, Clinical Lead for ePR Development
Specialist Interests: ECT, General
Specialist Interests: Vascular, General
Specialist Interests: General, Vascular
Specialist Interests: Deputy Trust Medical Director, Multi-Professional Education, Workforce Transformation, Medical Education
Specialist Interests: College Tutor (interim), Obstetric, Maxillo-Facial
Specialist Interests: Obstetric, Acute Pain, Chronic Pain
Specialist Interests: Hepatobiliary, General
For any queries or concerns regarding pre-operative assessment, please call the Pre – Operative Assessment department on xxxxxxxx
Other relevant information
Anaesthetics are given to allow patients to undergo operations and medical procedures without distress.
The word anaesthesia means ‘loss of sensation’. It can involve a simple local anaesthetic injection which numbs a small part of the body, such as a finger or around a tooth. It can also involve using powerful drugs which cause unconsciousness.
These drugs also affect the function of the heart, the lungs and the circulation. As a result, general anaesthesia is only given under the close supervision of an anaesthetist, who is trained to consider the best way to give you an effective anaesthetic but also to keep you safe and well.
The drugs used in anaesthesia work by blocking the signals that pass along your nerves to your brain. When the drugs wear off, you start to feel normal sensation again.
What can you do to improve your fitness for Major Surgery?
We know that when you have major surgery, it puts a big strain on your body. However, there are several ways that you can improve your fitness leading up to your surgery, which will help prepare your body for your operation and its recovery
Stop Smoking – even for a short time would benefit your fitness for any surgery, help can be found via http://www.quitsquad.nhs.uk/index.php
Before and after Major Surgery
Cough and Deep Breathing - After surgery taking deep breaths and coughing helps to clear your lungs. This helps the lungs do the vital job of delivering oxygen to the tissues in your body.
Mouth Care - Good mouth healthcare reduces risk of lung complications after major surgery and improves your overall general health.
We want you to concentrate on optimal dental care leading up to your surgery by focussing on:
This process of good dental healthcare should continue in hospital after your surgery.
Get out of bed - Getting out of bed and mobilising early after surgery is extremely important and will help prevent numerous complications. It will help clear secretions from your lungs and reduce your risk of lung infection, improve your circulation so that you may regain your strength and improve your gut's function. However, there is often patient concern about doing harm by moving soon after surgery, and anxiety about how sore the pain from surgery will be.
Steps to getting out of bed:
Head of Bed Elevated - It is important to keep the head of the bed elevated between 30-45 degrees. Being in an upright position after surgery will help your breathing.
More information about Anaesthesia can be found here:
Last updated: 25 April 2018