How do I prepare for surgery?

The operating room can be a scary place, but we at the Center for Women’s Health are here to walk our patients through the whole process.

Once there has been a decision to proceed with surgery, your doctor will schedule you for a pre-operative appointment.  This visit will allow the physician to explain the procedure and its risks and to confirm personal health information including current medications and smoking history.  There are certain medications that should be stopped prior to surgery, for instance, aspirin.  Also, remember to tell your physician about any herbal supplements you might be taking because these may also affect the surgery.  The physician might ask for you to sign consent for the procedure.  This visit will also allow our office staff to confirm insurance information and pre-certification.

Prior to surgery your doctor may ask for you to obtain blood work, EKG, and sometimes clearance from your primary care physician.  By working as a team with your primary doctor, we can accomplish the highest level of care for you.

The night prior to surgery you should have nothing to eat or drink after midnight.  If you typically take blood pressure medication in the morning, then the morning of surgery, you should take your blood pressure medication with a sip of water.  Depending upon the surgery, it is not uncommon for the physician to ask that you alter your diet the day prior to surgery, meaning eat clear liquids only.

Upon arrival to the hospital, the nurse will review all of your health information again.  An IV will also be placed.  This allows the anesthesiologist to give medication during surgery.  After surgery, you will be taken to the recovery room for close monitoring.

Some suggestions on what to bring to surgery:

  • Insurance card, driver’s license, picture ID
  • List of medications you usually take
  • Cases for contacts or dentures
  • Medical records given to you by other physicians as part of your pre-surgery work-up

If you are staying overnight:

  • Toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, face soap, face lotion, a nail file and lip balm
  • Robe or sleepwear- the hospital will be providing a gown, but it is at the patient’s discretion.

Most importantly*** A positive attitude and outlook- Studies have proven that patients that refrain from worry, anxiety and negative attitude prior to surgery have better outcomes.  Remember that we at the Center for Women’s Health are here to guide you through the whole process.