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Stay awake while you're on the operating room table

Local doctor pioneering "awake" surgery
Posted at 4:33 PM, May 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-11 19:33:45-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Your surgeon may ask you to stay awake if you’re ever on the operating table.

“It’s a matter of tailoring the operation to the patient,” said Sharp Grossmont Hospital Cardiothoracic Surgeon Ara Klijian.

Dr. Klijian helped pioneer a new technique that keeps patients awake while he operates on their lungs or esophagus.

“We’re calling it AVATS. It stands for Awake Video-Assisted Thoracic Surgery,” he said.

He added patients who use local anesthesia instead of general anesthesia recover faster from their procedures.

“It is an option in certain patients,” said Dr. Klijian.

People who can’t have general anesthesia because of other medical issues can also finally be treated.