General anaesthetics

Hi all, i had my op on mon & all went well but i seem to really react badly to the general anaesthetic. I’ve only had 2 ops in my life & both times i’ve been throwing up as soon as i come round & feel really dizzy & sick for about the next 12 hours. I ended up staying overnight in hosp due to this though i think they really just wanted me out. Does anyone else get this reaction as the other ladies in my ward seemed fine straight away. Is there anything i can do to avoid it if i need another op as it makes me feel so bad.
Thanks love Heather xx


I have had 3 general anaesthetics in the past month - for each I was meant to be in as a day patient only. The first I reacted really badly - was sick, dizzy, couldn’t stand on my own for about 12 hours afterwards and felt like I was drunk and ended up staying in for 24 hours. I told the next anaesthetist for my second op that I was a bit worried because of the way I reacted the first time. She looked at my notes and must have given me a different “mix” as the second time I was walking around practically as soon as I was back on the ward. The third time I told the guy to do exactly as the second person had done and was fine then also. So maybe there are different drugs, or different strengths or something? I don’t know! But have a chat with the next anaesthetist and let them know - maybe they’ll be able to help out!!

Hope you work it out as otherwise it adds more stress to something that really isn’t much fun in the first place!


Hi Heather

Sorry you were poorly after your op. When I had the first of my 2 WLE last September I told them I had thrown up after general for wisdom teeth removal 10 years earlier & about 30 mins prior to op they gave me anti-nausea drugs which seemed to work really well.

Second time round they used a different mix of the general & despite anti-nausea pill I felt sick when I woke up. I didn’t actually throw up & once I’d had a cuppa & sandwich I felt OK.

Make sure they know how sick you were for next time; they should be able to give you something first to help “lesson the effect”.

Take care

Sorry you did so badly with GA, but sadly it’s not uncommon. There are lots of meds they can give you before and during surgery to reduce the nausea or hopefully get rid of it completely.

At your follow-up appointment, ask them exactly what anti-nausea drugs you were given during surgery, including dosage, and look them up. Google can sometimes be useful, wikipedia has been helpful in particular. This way you can do your own research on SINV. (Think that’s what it’s called, “surgery-induced nausea and vomitting”, might be a different first letter. CINV is chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomitting, in case you come across that term too.)

If it happens that you do have to have further surgery you will be able to get out your notes and explain to the anaesthetist exactly what side-effects you had and what dosages you’d had that didn’t work, so they know you know your onions, and just in case they just try to give you the standard stuff.

Best of luck with your results, I hope you don’t have to have any further surgery, particularly as you felt so dreadful with it.

Hi Sandytoes, i did tell the nurse, the dr & the anaesthetist that i reacted badly with my first op & they said they’d have a look. It obviously didn’t work but it’s really interesting how u were ok the second & third times,ur first one is describing exactly how i felt, it’s awful isn’t it & as u say it just adds to the stress. In fact if i do have to have another op that would be what stressed me out much more than what i’d be having done i think. I’m going to make sure i insist on a different mix/strength or something. Thanks for the info,love Heather xx

Hi Simples & Chocciemuffin, i think they did give me anti-nausea drugs before but i do suffer from vertigo anyway so this obviously wasn’t enough. I will definately look up SINV so im ready & armed if there is a next time & will make sure i go with more info. U just trust what they give u don’t u, but im sure i must be able to have something that suits me better. That was the most traumatic part of the op for me as apart from the inevitable bruising & soreness i felt ok. Thanks for ur help ladies,love Heather xx

I have always been very sick after anaesthetics, and was very bad after the wle in may. I was in recovery 5 hrs and still sick 48hrs later. When I heard I need further axillary clearance I cried with the consultant as I couldn’t face t he thought of GA.
She arranged an appointment for me with the anaesthetist and I met with Him a few days before, he went thro my notes and found 4 key issues that could have made me sick, 1st and foremost he thought was the anaesthetic gas. 2nd was the heavy dose of iv antibiotic they give, and 3rd a muscle relaxant that had been given, - he said I didn’t need that for such a short op. 4th, the morphine that was given as standard for pain relief. He had not done the previous op by the way. Anyway we agreed 1. Completely intravenous anaesthesia not gas, 2. A gentler antibiotic, 3. no muscle relaxant, and 4 a paravertebral block. The last been a nerve block when I am asleep in my ribs so I would be numb for 6 to 8 hrs post op so I would not need morphine/painkillers.
It worked!! Not one bit of sickness/dizziness/pain. I was out of recovery in an hour and eating toast within 2. He was such a good dr, really was concerned I wasn’t ill, and it made all the difference. If you ever need an anaesthetic again, make sure you ask for a time to see the person anaesthetising you. Good luck

Just a quick note to say that it is not always the anaesthetic which is the cause of post-operative vomiting. It is worth checking to see if you were given any morphine or other opoid based drug for pain relief in theatre or recovery.


I was sick after both my ops this time (WLE and recon) I did tell them that anaesthetic tends to make me sick, and was given anti-sickness tablets. The only anti-sickness that has worked for me in the past (for my 3rd laproscopy op, 1st 2 I was sick) was delivered by suppository, not the nicest method, but it did the job.

" So maybe there are different drugs"

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There are loads of different drugs and even a range of different gases.

Some knock you out more quickly or slowly, some keep you under more deeply or more shallow, some are easier to come round from, some are quicker or slower to wake up from.

Our trust tends to use Isoflurane (2-chloro-2-(difluoromethoxy)-1,1,1-trifluoro-ethane) or fluoromethyl hexafluoroisopropyl ether (1,1,1,3,3,3-hexafluoro-2-(fluoromethoxy)propane).

They tend to knock you out with the IV and then keep you out with the gas.They also use stuff to relax the muscles (easier to get in and thus less physical trauma for you) and an amnesiac so that you don’t remember anything. It’s all very slick and clever.
The more you can tell the gasman about your last experience, the better they can manage your next one.

Hi sweetie, the throwing up and dizzyness and not being able to get out of bed is the norm for me too! Everytime I have had WLE, I have ended up being very sick and staying in over night. Did you have any morphine as thats another thing that makes me sick when I am in hospital.

Big hugs.


I feel for you having suffered from severe sickness after 4 GAs many years ago. I think I dreaded the after more than the actual op.
Then I had a further op after an 8 yr break and the anaesthetist told me that anti sickness meds had improved a lot. Well I was amazed to be ok after and asked what he had used, In my case it was Granisetron and I asked to have this at my next 8 ops (5 for BC.) and it worked a treat. You need to speak to the anaesthetist and they may find something that helps you. Good luck with it and I hope it goes well

PS Morphine makes me sick too so I have always tried to keep it to a minimum

After my masectomy I felt really sick and had a horrible taste in my mouth.I was given an injection in recovery.Before the next two ops I told the anaesthetic doctor how I reacted. I was given a different mix and anti sickness injections and tablets after. I was fine but had trouble convincing nurse that I was able to eat and drink. I did and was fine .I knew I was as the anti sickness was preventative rather than because I already felt sick.Once I had food I could feel my blood sugar improving. If I leave it too long before eating I do feel a bit sicky anyway.

wow u ladies are fantastic,i’m now armed with so much info,thank u so much, it was really worrying me & ur posts have really put my mind at rest if i do have to have anything else done (which hopefully i won’t) At least i know there are alternatives.
love Heather xx

GA always wipes me out, i take ages to recover, not nausea but just no energy and general lethargy. its not the morphine, i once had a self administered drip for pain and i was fine with that. However I did see that anibiotics are part of the mix, is that the same for all operations?? any oral antibiotic wipes me out too, normally more than the thing it is treating, I wonder if that is what does me in

Just had a GA on Wednesday for my Senintal Node Biopsy - coming round at first I felt sick (wasnt just heaved a little) then what shocked me was that I shook, started at my feet like a nervous twitch and then it came up my body like trembling with cold (I wasnt cold) was shaking for probably 2-3 minutes - they said this was all normal and it was the GA coming out - was taken back to the ward and after a cuppa and something to eat I felt fine just a little shaky on my legs when I wanted to visit the bathroom.

Hi all, well unfortunately i did need another op, ANC & to take a bit more margin which i had today, but the good news is that armed with the wonderful advice on here i was brave enough not to just accept everything & had a long chat with my anaesthestist & he looked very carefully at all my notes & came up with a different plan. He said he wasn’t going to give me anything apart from oxygen through the mask & would do it through the cannula & would also chuck all the best anti-sick meds in for good measure. I came round from the op without a hint of nausea or dizziness so it really worked. I could have kissed him i was so happy to be feeling ok, i just kept thanking him. It really does make such a difference as i was really dreading it. So thank u so much ladies, u’ve made such a difference to today for me :slight_smile: love Heather xxx

well it was not just us making it work. you listened and were brave enough to make a stand and say what you wanted. you obvioulsy sounded calm and well informed and they listened to you.

good result all round!!

Well done you for speaking up. It can be scary to be faced with people in positions of authority and putting your foot down, but you did, and got the benefit of being clear and forthright. So glad you felt ok after it.

Hey all I go for my wle on wednesday. I never had GA so I don’t know what to expect. Hopefully I won’t get too sick. I went for pre-testing the other day and I saw them bringing someone out the operating room and that person was vomitting all over the place. Not nervous just don’t know what the heck to expect.