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Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU)

The UVMC Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) is a highly specialized unit that provides special care and individualized nursing attention after surgery. The PACU is where you recover from the immediate effects of anesthesia. No matter how simple or how complex the procedure, the goal of UVMC PACU is to ensure you awaken safely and comfortably.

The PACU Team

The nurses of the PACU deliver patient care at the highest level of proficiency and efficiency. We provide individualized care for each patient, from pre-operative preparation through recovery. All of our nurses are experienced clinicians with a wide range of clinical backgrounds and expertise.

PACU nurses are Registered Nurses (RNs), and the majority of the RNs have more than 20 years of experience. PACU RNs are experienced in critical care nursing and have Advanced Cardiac Life Support and CPR training. Some of our nurses are Certified Perianesthesia nurses as well as Certified Critical Care nurses.   

PACU Procedures and Services

The UVMC PACU nurse facilitates your return to consciousness, without complication or adverse reactions to drugs or treatments. While you are in PACU, the staff, when applicable:

  • Monitors you for any signs of complications
  • Monitors your level of consciousness
  • Continuously monitors and treats you for any discomfort such as pain or nausea

Your length of stay in the UVMC PACU may vary and depends on factors such as:

  • The type of surgery performed
  • Your response to surgery and anesthesia
  • Your medical history

Most patients remember very little about their recovery room experience.

When you are ready for transfer to a hospital room or to the discharge area, your family members are informed. The average stay in PACU is one hour. If you are still in PACU after one and a half hours, our staff updates your family on your progress.