How Long Before Surgery Should I Stop Eating Edibles? Let’s Know More

As a general rule, it is best to avoid eating anything for at least 24 to 72 hours before the scheduled surgery.

The goal is to give the body enough time to eliminate cannabinoids and their metabolites from the system, reducing the possibility of anesthesia interactions during surgery. This timeframe, however, is not a guarantee, as individual responses to cannabis can vary greatly.

First Understand It

The use of cannabis-infused edibles, such as gummies, cookies, and brownies, has grown in popularity due to their medicinal and recreational benefits.

However, if you are scheduled for surgery, you must be aware of the risks associated with consuming edibles prior to the procedure. In this article, we will look at how edibles can affect anesthesia and recovery, as well as the recommended time frame for discontinuing use prior to surgery and the importance of open communication with your healthcare provider.

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Understanding Edibles and Their Effects

Edibles are taken orally and can take 30 minutes to 2 hours to take effect, depending on your metabolism and dosage. They contain delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive compound responsible for the “high” sensation, as well as cannabidiol (CBD), which has potential medicinal properties without producing psychoactive effects.

When edibles are consumed, they are processed by the liver, where THC is converted into its active metabolite, which is more potent and has a longer duration of action than inhaling cannabis. This metabolic process may have consequences for surgical patients.

Potential Interactions with Anesthesia

Edibles can disrupt the anesthesia used during surgery, potentially leading to complications. To perform the procedure safely, anesthesia is used to induce unconsciousness, pain relief, and muscle relaxation. THC and other cannabis compounds in edibles may interact with anesthetic agents, reducing their effectiveness and causing unpredictable results.

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Edibles and anesthesia can interact to cause prolonged sedation or altered drug metabolism, making it difficult for the anesthesiologist to control the depth and duration of unconsciousness. Furthermore, the effect of edibles on heart rate and blood pressure may interfere with the stability of vital signs during surgery.

Factors Affecting Clearance of Edibles from the System

Several factors influence how long edibles remain in your system and, as a result, how soon you can safely undergo surgery after eating them:

  • Frequency of Use: Regular edible users may have a cannabinoid buildup in their system, which can take longer to clear.
  • Cannabinoids may be processed more quickly by people who have a faster metabolism.
  • Dosage: Higher THC doses may take longer to metabolize and eliminate from the body.
  • THC is fat-soluble and can be stored in fat cells, resulting in a longer detection time in people with higher body fat percentages.
  • Staying hydrated can help flush toxins out of the system more efficiently, including THC.

Open Communication with Healthcare Providers

Your ability to communicate openly and honestly with your healthcare providers is likely the single most important step in the pre-surgery preparation process. You need to let your surgeon, anesthesiologist, and the nursing staff know about your cannabis use, including the types of edibles you consume and how often you do so.

If you are honest about how much cannabis you use, the medical staff will be able to make educated decisions, modify their procedures for administering anesthesia, and better ensure your safety both during and after the procedure. Your healthcare providers are not there to judge you but rather to provide the highest possible level of care for you, and keeping information about your use of cannabis a secret can put your health in jeopardy.

At The Last

It is essential to have a thorough understanding of the potential implications of consuming edibles containing cannabis before undergoing surgical procedures as the legalization and acceptance of cannabis continue to spread.

It is recommended that patients abstain from eating at least 24 to 72 hours before their scheduled surgical procedure in order to maximize their chances of a positive surgical outcome.

However, different people will have different responses to cannabis, and factors such as dosage, frequency of use, and metabolism all play a significant role in determining how long it will take for the high to wear off.

Maintaining open lines of communication with your healthcare providers is essential, as this enables them to make educated decisions regarding the anesthesia protocols and ensures your safety while you are undergoing surgical procedures.

If you are planning to undergo surgery and have any concerns or questions about the use of edibles, you should always consult with qualified medical professionals first.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I consume edibles before surgery?
It is generally advised to avoid consuming edibles before surgery due to potential interactions with anesthesia and complications during the procedure.

2. How long before surgery should I stop eating edibles?
To ensure safety, it is recommended to stop using edibles at least 24 to 72 hours before the scheduled surgery.

3. Why should I stop using edibles before surgery?
Edibles can interact with anesthesia, affecting its effectiveness and leading to unpredictable outcomes during the surgery.

4. What factors affect how long edibles stay in the system?
Factors such as frequency of use, metabolism, dosage, body fat percentage, and hydration can influence how long edibles remain in the body.

5. Why is open communication with healthcare providers essential?
Being transparent about your cannabis use allows medical teams to make informed decisions about anesthesia protocols and ensure your safety during the surgical process.

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