Anesthesiologist  What They Do

Just the Facts


Anesthesiologist Career Video



Administers anesthetics prior to, during, or after surgery, or other medical procedures.

This career is part of the Health Science cluster Therapeutic Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Monitors patient before, during, and after anesthesia and counteract adverse reactions or complications.
  • Records type and amount of anesthesia and patient condition throughout procedure.
  • Provides and maintains life support and airway management and helps prepare patients for emergency surgery.
  • Administers anesthetic or sedation during medical procedures, using local, intravenous, spinal, or caudal methods.
  • Examines patient, obtains medical history, and uses diagnostic tests to determine risk during surgical, obstetrical, and other medical procedures.
  • Positions patient on operating table to maximize patient comfort and surgical accessibility.
  • Coordinates administration of anesthetics with surgeons during operation.
  • Decides when patients have recovered or stabilized enough to be sent to another room or ward or to be sent home following outpatient surgery.
  • Confers with other medical professionals to determine type and method of anesthetic or sedation to render patient insensible to pain.
  • Orders laboratory tests, x-rays, and other diagnostic procedures.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Exposed to disease and infections more than once a month through work such as patient care, laboratory work, and sanitation control
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to hazardous situations involving possible injury such as cuts, bites, stings, and minor burns more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Exposed to radiation more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of special protective items such as a breathing apparatus, safety harness, full protection suit, or radiation protection
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours
  • Overtime work
  • Weekend work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Obstetrical Anesthesiologist --