The Day of Your Surgery
What to do the day of your surgery
Please report to the hospital at your scheduled appointment time. You will be escorted to a private surgery preparation room where a nurse will prepare you for surgery and an anesthesiologist will visit you.
Additionally, you should:
- Prepare and bring a list of all the medications you take, including all prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, vitamins and herbal supplements. Include the name of the each medication, dosage and frequency. If you cannot do this, bring all of your medications to your pre-op visit.
- Provide a list of any allergies you may have, including medication, food and environmental allergies like latex.
- Do NOT smoke. Patients who smoke get more infections. Please try to stop smoking at least 24 hours before the surgery. This also applies after your surgery. The longer you do not smoke after surgery, the better to help fight off infection.
- Please bathe and wash your hair the night and morning before your surgery. For certain procedures you will be given antibacterial soap to use for these baths. You will receive this during your pre op visit at the hospital. This is very important to help reduce the chance of post op infections.
- Do NOT shave near your surgery site for at least two days prior to your surgery. If necessary, the staff will use electric clippers at the surgery site the morning of your surgery. Razors can leave small cuts on the skin and increase the chance of developing an infection.
- Immediately notify your physician or the surgical unit if you think you may have an active infection or known colonization prior to the time of your surgery and/or if you develop a cold, cough, rash, fever, high blood sugar or other illness. These may require your surgery to be rescheduled.
- Coughs and colds spread easily in a closed environment. If your family or visitors are sick, please ask them to stay at home. Always use good respiratory hygiene especially in a hospital or around sick people. Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Use a tissue when available and immediately throw it away. Wash your hands with soap and warm water or use the hand sanitizer that is available in all patient rooms and throughout the hospital. This promotes good health and stops the spread of infection.
What to expect
- You must make arrangements for a responsible adult to drive you home from the hospital and stay with you at home for 24 hours after the procedure.
- Your family will be asked to remain in the waiting room while you are taken to a room and prepared for your procedure.
- You will be given an ID bracelet and change into a hospital gown.
- After the nurse has checked you in, two of your family members will be allowed to stay with you until you are taken to the procedure area.
- Family/friends should keep your valuables and personal belongings such as eyeglasses, contacts, hearing aids, dentures, money, credit cards and jewelry. Please note: Tanner Health System is not responsible for lost items.
What to bring
- Bring a living will, a durable power of attorney or other medical care directive (if you have one) for your chart.
- Wear comfortable, loose fitting clothing and comfortable walking shoes.
- Bring your contact lens supplies and a case. Your contacts will be removed prior to surgery.
- Bring cases for your eyeglasses and hearing aids.
- Bring personal items such as a toothbrush, hairbrush and deodorant in a small suitcase if staying the night.
- Remember to bring your co-pay/deductible as discounts are available for payment at time of service.
- For your safety, the staff may ask you the same question many times. They will ask:
- Your name or the name of the patient
- What kind of surgery/procedure you are having
- The part of your body to be operated on
- They will also double check the records from your doctor’s office.
- Although routinely used during your surgery, gowns and gloves may be worn by hospital staff outside the OR if you have been diagnosed with a certain drug-resistant organism, such as MRSA.
- A physician will mark your body at the surgical site. Make sure they mark only the correct site and nowhere else.
- Marking usually happens when you are awake. Sometimes you cannot be awake for the marking. If this happens, a family member or friend or another health care worker can watch the marking to make sure that your correct body part is marked.
- Your neck, upper back or lower back will be marked if you are having spine surgery. The physician will check the exact place on your spine in the operating room after you are asleep.
- You may get antibiotics prior to surgery, usually 60 minutes before your surgery. Feel free to ask if you have this medicine ordered. Antibiotics should be stopped 24 hours after your surgery.
- At the scheduled time, you will be transported to the operating suite for your procedure.
- The procedure site will be cleaned with special soap that kills germs then draped and kept warm—all of which help reduce infection risk.
- The physician and procedure team will take a “time out” just before your procedure. This is done to make sure they are doing the correct procedure on the correct body part on the correct person.
- A registered nurse will be with you during your procedure to act as your advocate by ensuring that your privacy is protected, that everything needed is available for your procedure, the sterile field is maintained and that your care is accurately documented.
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