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Preparing for Surgery

Once you and your Doctor decide that surgery will help you, you’ll need to learn what to expect from the surgery and create a treatment plan for the best results afterward. Preparing mentally and physically for surgery is an important step toward a successful result. Understanding the process and your role in it will help you recover more quickly and have fewer problems.

Pre-Op & Post-Op Instructions for Procedures

Guidelines for eating and drinking

  • Do not eat any solid foods after midnight the night before your surgery. This includes chewing gum, candy, mints, milk, orange juice or carbonated drinks (soda or tonic)
  • Do not take any form of aspirin or ibuprofen or any medication containing aspirin 7 days prior to procedure
  • Clear liquids should be finished two hours before surgery. Clear liquids include apple juice, water, white grape juice and an electrolyte solution (like Gatorade)
  • Do not drink anything during the two hours before surgery

You will receive a call from the Hospital by 6:00 pm the night before the procedure with important information. If you do not receive a call by 6:30 pm, please call the office at (212) 781-9696.

Patients 18 or older consent to their own care. However, if a patient 18 or older is unable to give consent, the legal guardian must sign. The guardian must bring proof of legal guardianship to the hospital.

What to bring the day of surgery

  • Bring your insurance information, including authorization numbers
  • All medication bottles, and/or pharmacy receipts, so medication doses can be verified
  • Bring a written list of any questions you may have
  • Bring a CD player/Walkman with headphones. If you are having local anesthesia you may be able to use them
  • Bring a copy of court papers regarding legal guardianship, if this applies, and the phone number of the legal guardian or social worker if you are not the legal guardian

Who should come to day surgery

A responsible adult must accompany you if you are going to receive anesthesia or sedation. He or she must bring you home. Arrange to have an adult stay with you overnight.

The Day of Surgery

You must remove all jewelry (including navel or other piercings), nail polish, acrylic nails and contact lenses before coming to the hospital. Please leave all valuables at home.

  • Please arrive 90 minutes before the time of surgery. This allows time to register, and have blood tests or any necessary assessments. (If you are scheduled for surgery at 7:30 a.m., please arrive at 6:15 a.m.)
  • Allow extra time for parking
  • Tell the nurse or anesthesia provider if you are pregnant. (All females over age 12 will have a pregnancy test.)
  • Your family member or friend will be able to stay with you prior to surgery

After Surgery

Once you are settled in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (recovery room), the nurse will bring your family member or friend to be with you.

Your nurse will teach you and your family member or friend about your home care needs. He or she will give you written instructions. Once your family member or friend has learned the care, he or she may take you home. The nurse will give you the telephone number of the surgeon and the anesthesia doctor on call.

  • Do not drink or eat anything in the car on the trip home.
  • The combination of anesthesia, food, and car motion can quite often cause nausea or vomiting. After arriving home, wait until you are hungry before trying to eat. Begin with a light meal and try to avoid greasy food for the first 24 hours.
  • Take your pain medicine as directed. Begin the pain medicine as you start getting uncomfortable, but before you are in severe pain. If you wait to take your pain medication until the pain is severe, you will have more difficulty controlling the pain.

Please call us with any questions or concerns.