Getting ready for general anaesthetic - gel nails dilemma!

(19 Posts)
Crazyladee Sun 10-Nov-19 11:28:23

So I'm having fairly major surgery on Wednesday. At my pre op last week, I was told two different things by two different nurses regarding my gel nails. One said they all had to be removed and the other said keeping them on is fine as they will just use my earlobe to put the clippy thing on if they cant get a reading.

On one hand I don't want to have them taken off unnecessarily as I've recently had them done for an event and they cost me over £30 but on the other hand I don't want to risk my surgery not going ahead as I've been waiting since April. The nurse who told me they would be fine was the second nurse and she said that it wouldn't effect my operation going ahead as if I was an emergency case, they wouldn't give a monkeys about my nails.

Can anyone advise on this?

OP’s posts: |
Crazyladee Sun 10-Nov-19 13:05:13

Bit of a bump..

OP’s posts: |
TheQueef Sun 10-Nov-19 13:06:58

Don't they need to see circulation or something?
Toe naked should do it.

ohwhattodowithmylife Sun 10-Nov-19 13:08:51

I'm a nurse but don't work in surgery so someone who does may be able to better advise of their processes.
They can use the ear lobe for the oxygen saturation but usually a finger is used and my feeling would be to take off the gel nails on the middle finger.
You don't want to make it any harder for them to ensure they are monitoring you properly.
Goodluck with the surgery

Sunsoottitsoot Sun 10-Nov-19 13:09:42

It's not worth leaving them on. I've had to removed normal nail polish for surgery. It's a waste for both you and, quite frankly the NHS if you dont take them off and it cant go ahead. Someone else who values surgery more than £30 on gel nails could have had their op sooner...

GinisLife Sun 10-Nov-19 13:12:52

I had a GA for a camera procedure and didn't take mine off. No one said anything.

Killerqueen9 Sun 10-Nov-19 13:17:26

For the sake of potentially wasting loads of NHS money on an operation that could be used by someone else if it can't go ahead, then I would take them off.

BareKneesDeCourcy Sun 10-Nov-19 13:22:30

On one hand remove it.

On the other hand leave it on.

Crazyladee Sun 10-Nov-19 13:50:29

Oh for goodness sake of course I value my surgery more than a set of gel nails!!

I'm querying this as I've been told conflicting things by two different nurses!!

OP’s posts: |
Greybeardy Sun 10-Nov-19 17:23:18

Unless your having surgery on your hands (or feet if the gels are on your toes) it will make absolutely no difference at all. The finger proves can be put on sideways and there will be ear probes in theatre. (DOI: anaesthetist).

Greybeardy Sun 10-Nov-19 17:30:49

‘You’re’ not ‘your’ & ‘probes’ not ‘proves’! 😖

Difficultcustomer Sun 10-Nov-19 17:37:16

General NHS guidance on surgery includes removing polish.

Sunsoottitsoot Sun 10-Nov-19 17:38:58

I had to take mine off for liver surgery - no where near my hands or feet. If you've been given conflicting advice the only way to resolve it is by phoning the hospital/consultant's secretary. Not asking mumsnet hmm

Moreisnnogedag Sun 10-Nov-19 17:45:54

How easy is it to take off? If relatively easy, then you could speak to your anaesthetist and get their opinion. Some can care a lot, others not so much.

Babdoc Sun 10-Nov-19 17:52:48

Retired anaesthetist here. We could always get a pick up from a toe or earlobe, unless the patient was shocked and peripherally shut down- in which case, the finger probe struggled to read anything either!
If you’re worried, phone the pre-assessment unit and get a ruling from the anaesthetist covering them.
As a separate point, make sure you remove any mascara - we either tape your eyes shut or put gels on them, and the mascara will get pressed into your cornea. You can’t produce sufficient tears to lubricate your eyes during a GA, so will wake up with them red and inflamed.

crosser62 Sun 10-Nov-19 17:58:41

I would advise remove them.
Probes for eats are like bloody gold dust in our trust.
Priority for using them would be for people with significant circulatory issues which is a large proportion of our frail elderly population, smokers, heart disease patients.. blah blah blah.
Finger probes are plentiful.
There is just that risk that the probes won’t work accurately through these nails,
I’d advise remove them.

Crazyladee Sun 10-Nov-19 21:14:08

Thank you for the replies. I've decided to have them taken off. I'm nervous enough about my operation without the added worry about my nails.


I've had about 16 replies on this thread. Two of which are snarky ones from you.. either insinuating I value a set of gel nails more than my hysterectomy or berating me for asking mumsnet a quick question about the matter to get some advice. Which you could argue the point for a lot of threads. Have I pissed you off in a former life or did you get out of bed on the wrong side this morning?

OP’s posts: |
Jojo19834 Sun 10-Nov-19 21:18:58

Hi, from a different perspective I had gel nails for 8 years, never a day off and had surgery the other month. Removed as advised and thought I’d be straight back in to put them back on and I still haven’t. Love my natural nails and not sure I’ll ever go back. Saving me a bundle too!

Sunsoottitsoot Mon 11-Nov-19 00:04:45

I just dont understand why it's a "dilemma". You were the one who brought up how much they cost - I find it odd that it's even a consideration.
The other side of it is people on the thread may say "oh, it'll be fine", but on the day it's not up to them, it's up to the staff doing the surgery.
Good luck with the surgery, as above you'll need to take off your mascara but also any lipbalm (I didn't know this and had slathered it on two mins before going into surgery). I hope it goes smoothly.

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