Smoking And Surgery : Smokers beware! There is one more problem that may add to your woes. If you do not stop smoking prior and post the surgery there is great likelihood that your wound will heal late. How? Find out here.
There are certain situations in which smoking can aggravate the problem. One such situation is surgery. Doctors, generally advise to quit smoking before and after the operation because smoking decreases the level of blood flow. Dr. Harvey J. Woehlk, M.D. of the Medical College of Wisconsin has found out from his study that there was 20 times inadequate oxygen supply to the smokers’ heart who smoked 24 hours before the outpatient surgery with general anesthesia as compared to the non-smokers and ex-smokers.
Dr. Woehlck mentioned that general anesthesia and surgery cause stress. During surgery there is a possibility that the patient may experience pain. Changes may take place in his blood pressure. The patient may also suffer from loss of blood and other unfortunate events during surgery. So, Dr. Woehlck suggested that you should not smoke before surgery because smoking, apart from causing stress can compound the above problems too.
Why Smoking Causes Problems Before and After Surgery
Smoking constricts the blood vessels. When the blood vessels are narrowed down the oxygen supply to the cells gets reduced. Even the ability of the hemoglobin to move the oxygen lowers down. All these delay the wound healing process.
There are ample evidences which prove that second hand smoke (passive smoke) also delays the healing process of the wounds.
Smoking which reduces the blood flow results in the loss of skin during the process of healing. Because smoking delays wound healing it causes death to the skin leaving bad and ugly scars.
Smoking also increases the risk of coughing after the surgery. This may lead to unwanted bleeding.
Doctors advise you to quit smoking prior to your surgery. They even suggest that for better results you must give up smoking after the operation. Most doctors advise you to stop smoking two weeks before and after the surgery.
According to health experts patients can help to improve their results after surgery if they are nonsmokers or have stopped smoking. Results after surgery were significantly better for people who never smoked and for those who stopped smoking than for smokers.
You might get frightened discovering that smoking causes problems at the time of surgery. But our intention isnot to scare you. Rather, we are just making you aware of the harmful effects of smoking so that you can stop smoking. Even if you can not withdraw yourself from smoking, at least quit smoking for a certain period of time (2 weeks prior and post surgery) for better results.