Would you prefer to wake up from surgery comfortable or painful? What would you want for your cat? I'm going to guess you said comfortable! Because we believe excellent pain control is not only humane but speeds healing, we utilize multiple methods of pain control at The Cat's Meow.
Pharmaceutically, besides the anesthesia, every patient having surgery (from dentistry to abdominal surgery or even neuters or mass removals) gets local anesthetic as a nerve block to numb the region. Depending on the procedure and the patient's health, we may administer NSAIDS (think ibuprofen or Aleve but in cat-safe form, as these are not safe for cats) to decrease swelling and pain or steroids to decrease inflammation. We frequently also use various opioids (the morphine family) for pain. Sometimes we incorporate gabapentin, a neuropathic pain medication.
There are also non-pharmaceutical modalities we incorporate.
Post-operatively, we can use therapeutic laser (photobiomodulation) to bring oxygen and circulation to the area and decrease pain and swelling and enhance tissue healing.
We have recently purchased an additional non-pharmaceutical modality (Assisi Loop Lounge) for improving healing and decreasing pain and swelling. This incorporates targeted pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy. We can use PEMF in combination with all the other modalities to decrease post operative pain.
We want our patients to wake up comfortable and heal quickly without pain.
If you're skeptical about therapeutic laser and PEMF therapy, they are forms of complimentary medicine that are safe and effective and generally without side effects. They can both be used for acute and chronic pain and have been extensively studied (in humans and various animals).
Here's just one example of a study using PEMF on humans undergoing C-section): https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/28060214/?i=65&from=pemf%20therapy
Conclusion: "PEMF treatment after C-section decreases postsurgical pain, analgesic use, and surgical wound exudate and edema significantly, and is associated with a high level of patient satisfaction."
You can go to the ncb site and type in PEMF or other keywords for access to hundreds of medical articles and studies on humans and in veterinary medicine.
To learn more about these modalities, visit these sites: