TIVA vs. General Anesthesia

At my practice, one of the most important – and unique – benefits we offer to patients is our use of TIVA (Total Intravenous Anesthesia). Many surgeons do not offer this option, and here are a few of the questions I get about it.

When is TIVA used?

For almost all of my surgical procedures, I prefer to use TIVA. This includes facial plastic surgery, body contouring, and breast enhancement – such as breast augmentation in Hawaii.

How is TIVA different?

General anesthesia puts a patient to sleep with a gas (inhalational anesthesia). TIVA, on the other hand, achieves sedation and pain control through the use of IV medication only. At my practice, we further customize anesthesia for our patients by combining TIVA with tumescent fluid. Our “preemptive” anesthesia reduces discomfort during and after surgery by blocking pain signals even before any trauma occurs.

What are the benefits of TIVA?

My partner, Dr. Bao Phan, and I have seen a variety of benefits to TIVA:

  • TIVA seems to reduce the incidence of blood clots in the legs.
  • Patients have less nausea and vomiting than they do after general anesthesia.
  • Recovery from TIVA is quicker than recovery from general anesthesia, with less of a “hangover.”
  • In most cases, a breathing tube does not need to be used, so patients do not have a sore throat after surgery (a common complaint after general anesthesia).

Quite simply, we’ve seen that TIVA allows patients to get back to living life, feeling good, and looking great sooner than they would after general anesthesia.

NOTE: The safety and effectiveness of anesthesia is proportional to the abilities of the person administering it. Our success with TIVA is dependent upon the skilled, experienced, and highly qualified anesthesiologists we work with. We’re grateful for their help in providing our patients with a comfortable, successful surgery and recovery.

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