Preparation at Home

Before you leave home for your surgery:

  • Take a shower using antibacterial soap as instructed.
  • You may brush your teeth or rinse your mouth; however, do not swallow water.
  • Follow medication instructions given to you by your surgeon, anesthesiologist, and/or pre-operative nurse.
  • Do not wear makeup, mascara, skin creams, lotions, nail polish or metal hairpins.
  • Plan to arrive on time, leaving enough time for parking.
  • Menstruating women should not use tampons.
  • Wear comfortable loose-fitting clothing that will fit over bandages and splints.
  • Remove all jewelry and leave it at home.
  • Do not bring any valuables (jewelry, credit cards, money, cell phones) to the hospital. This includes body piercing jewelry and tongue studs. You may not wear jewelry during surgery.

What to expect in surgical prep area?

When you're about to have surgery, you can expect the following:

  • An armband will be placed on your wrist.
  • You will change into a hospital gown.
  • Prior to surgery, you will be asked to remove dentures, hearing aids and eyeglasses.
  • To prevent blood clots, stockings and additional devices might be applied to your legs.
  • You will meet your pre-operative (pre-op) nurse, who will complete your nursing history and assessment, provide education, start an intravenous (IV) line (a small catheter in your hand or arm that will provide access to your circulatory system for medications), and oversee any pre-op preparation your surgeon has requested.
  • You will meet with your anesthesiologist.
  • You will be taken into the operating room (OR) on a stretcher by a nurse from the OR and/or an anesthesia team member
  • We make all efforts to begin surgery at your scheduled time. But there might be the chance that your surgery may start sooner or is delayed.

What Your Family Should Expect While You Are in Surgery

Here are some points to keep in mind:

  • The surgical family waiting room is located adjacent to the Surgical Access Unit.
  • Family should immediately check in to the waiting room after the patient has been taken to the holding area.
  • The length of surgery time you were given is an estimate. Often surgeries go beyond the estimated time-frame, or in some cases as long as scheduled. This does not mean there was a complication or problem.
  • Your family member will be given a card with an identification number to check the status of your surgery on a television screen in the waiting area.
  • The surgeon will call or come out to see a member of the family when the surgery is complete.
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