Preparing for Surgery & Procedure
The Day Before
- Bowel Preparation before Surgery
- You will be given instructions for bowel preparation at your pre-operative appointment. It is important that you follow these instructions completely.
- The day before surgery, you may drink only clear liquids. Clear liquids include water, coffee, tea, apple juice, grape juice, cranberry juice, bouillon, broth, clear popsicles, clear soda and gelatin.
- After midnight the day before your surgery, you must take nothing by mouth except medicines that have been approved by the anesthesiologist and surgeon. Your stomach must be empty at the start of the procedure to reduce the risk of aspiration.
- If You are ill Before Surgery
- Should you develop a cold, persistent cough, fever, skin breakdown or any changes in your condition during the days before your surgery, please notify the surgeon immediately, as you will need to be re-evaluated for surgical readiness. You need to be in the best possible shape for anesthesia. Scheduling can be adjusted to your condition, if necessary.
The Day of Surgery
- We recommend that you shower in the morning on the day of surgery, but do not use any moisturizers, creams, lotions or makeup. Remove your jewelry and do not wear nail polish.
- You may wear dentures, but you will need to remove them just prior to surgery.
What to bring to the Hospital
- It is recommended to bring only the bare necessities to the hospital. Do not bring any jewelry or more than $20 cash. You may want to bring a picture of a family member, friend or pet to help you relax.
- There are a few other things that may make your stay a little more comfortable:
- This guide
- A small overnight bag with toiletries such as toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo and lotion
- Your eyeglasses and a case, if possible
- Protective storage cases(s) for corrective lenses, dentures, hearing aids, etc.
- Address and phone book of loved ones
- Lip balm
- Comfortable, loose-fitting clothes to wear when you go home. Clothes that are easily removed and easy to slip on are the best
- Hospital Pre-admitting Procedure
- Before you can have your surgery, you will need to follow your hospital’s policy on pre-admission testing and registration. Specific instructions will be given to you by your hospital or surgeon’s office.
- After you are registered and checked-in, you will be asked to change your clothing and put on a hospital gown and slippers. If you wear dentures, corrective lenses or hearing aids, you will be asked to remove them for safety reasons, so it’s best to bring your own container for storing each of these items.
- You will be asked to sign an operative consent form, even though you may already have done so at your surgeon’s office. Your signature indicates that the procedure has been explained to you, that you understand it and that you have no further questions.
- Your blood pressure, pulse, respiration, oxygen saturation, temperature, height and weight will be measured. An intravenous (IV) line will be placed in your forearm. This allows fluids and/or medications into your blood stream. You may also be given some medicine to help you relax.
- When general anesthesia is used, you will be sound asleep and under the care of the anesthesiologist throughout the operation. Many patients have an instinctive fear of anesthesia. The sophisticated monitoring system now used makes a recognition and treatment of problems with anesthesia almost immediate. A minute change in the oxygen level in you blood, in the amount of carbon dioxide you breathe out, in your heart rate or in your blood pressure would be reported immediately.
- Your anesthesiologist will discuss the specific risks of general anesthesia with you before your surgery.
- The Operating Room
- Going to the operating room (OR) is not a normal experience for most of us. Your surgical team recognizes the natural anxiety with which most patients approach this step in the process to achieving their goals. We believe that a description of the surgical experience will help you prepare for it.
- Specialists using the most modern equipment and techniques possible will attend to you. This team includes at least one board certified anesthesiologist, a trained surgical assistant and nurses that will assist your surgeon. A registered nurse is in charge of the OR.
- Once you enter the OR, the staff will do everything they can to make you feel secure. You may walk to the OR be transported on a gurney (a bed or stretcher on wheels). There, the nurses who will be assisting your surgeon will review your chart.
- Once you are settled on the operating table, you will be connected to several monitors and an intravenous (IV) catheter. A quick acting sedative will be given through the IV tubing after you have breathed pure oxygen for a few minutes. Once you fall asleep, your anesthesiologist will usually slip an endotracheal tube through your mouth into your windpipe to guarantee that your breathing is unimpeded. An anesthetic gas and other medications will keep you asleep and pain free. At the same time, the anesthesiologist will connect you to monitoring devices.
- After you are asleep, a small plastic nasogastric (NG) tube is placed through your nose into your stomach, and another tube called a urinary catheter into your bladder.
- The surgery will last about two hours to three hours, but the length of the operation is dependent on the type of procedure(s) performed, number of extra procedures necessary, if any and the difficulty of finding working space within a very large abdomen.
- When your surgery has been completed and your dressings are in place, you will be moved to the recovery room.