In his It’s Your Health column, UTMB Dr. Michael Warren wrote that, not long ago, anesthesiologists were considered the “phantoms” of medicine. Patients were barely aware of their presence, having only a vague memory of someone in a green cap saying: “Hi, I’m your anesthesiologist; you’re going to sleep now.” Today, anesthesiologists are much more visible, and patients usually discuss the various options with them before surgery. There are advantages and disadvantages to each type and category of anesthetic. As the patient, you have a right to explanations that will allow you to make intelligent choices about your anesthesiologist and the anesthetics.