Ron, the Chief Executive Officer of a prominent health care organization prepared for his operation by having a long discussion with his surgeon. He was especially hopeful to avoid a total anaesthetic because he did not want to suffer from the effects and really needed a shorter recovery time to speed up his return to work. The surgeon agreed that in his case it was possible to use a strong local anaesthetic.
However, on the day of surgery, the anaesthetist prepared him for a total anaesthetic saying that it was the usual procedure in this kind of case. Ron said that he had discussed it with his surgeon and they had agreed to do the surgery under a local anaesthetic. The anaesthetist agreed that this was possible, but that because he had not had that instruction, unfortunately he would have to give him a total anesthetic. Ron replied, somewhat irritated that he did not want it and would not accept a total anaesthetic. He insisted on a local anaesthetic.
“I will have to talk to the surgeon,” threatened the anaesthetist.
“Please do,” replied Ron. “I will simply not allow you to proceed with a total anaesthetic."
Under the circumstance this was quite an effort but finally the anaesthetist agreed and gave him a local anaesthetic.
Ron found this a particularly difficult event and is sure that almost anyone else in these circumstances would have submitted to the anaesthetist.