Dr Craig Grice

XXXIVth Edinburgh
Anaesthesia Festival
19-21 August 2020

Dr Craig Grice

Dr Craig GriceDr Craig Grice Consultant in Anaesthesia and Pain Medicine

I trained in medicine at the University of Glasgow in 1986. Following on from this I moved to the Southern Hemisphere for 2 years to recover. Working at the Gold Coast , Mount Isa and Cloncurry Hospitals, Australia I realised my career as a surfer and kangaroo wrestler was never going to be successful. Looking for a speciality in medicine which required similar skills I returned to the UK to becin Anaesthesia.

In London I embarked on my trainee career in Ophthalmic Anaesthesia with a globe puncture on my second operative list. I realised soon that "things could only get better".. it was the 90's after all!

I further consolidated my experience working at the Western and Moorfields Eye Hospitals before returning to Scotland to take up a Consultant post at the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh/Princess Alexander Eye Pavillion.

11 years into my Consultant career what have I learned so far:

  1. Avoid giving a general anaesthetic (or any anaesthetic) if at all possible.
  2. Always say yes to a coffee break.
  3. Beware of patients and doctors with beards ( both male and female).
  4. The weather in Australia is much better than Scotland.

Ophthalmic Anaesthesia presents a unique set of challenges, a mainly elderly population, significant comorbidity, high anxiety levels and remote site anaesthesia. Cataract surgery is the most common procedure performed in the UK with over 300000 operations performed each year.

There is increasing evidence that the effects of general Anaesthesia on cognitive function at the extremes of age may have a permanent negative effect. Avoiding giving an anaesthetic may have been written "slightly tongue in cheek" but maybe there is more to it after all!