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Surgery Snapshot: What You Need to Know

Life sprinkles in lots of unexpected appointments—from waiting rooms to office meetings to sudden or even scheduled surgeries, it seems there will always be a new outline to your day.

Surgery is definitely one of those things you can’t always anticipate, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t plan for it. If you find out you need surgery, don’t dismiss the important steps leading up to the procedure. Instead, focus on understanding your surgery and what your recovery will look like. Go into your next surgery with ease and confidence. Get started with this checklist and be sure to follow all your doctor's instructions.


4 weeks before surgery:

  • Try your best to stay healthy! If you end up developing a cold, sore throat, fever, diarrhea, or other illness, contact your surgeon’s office.
  • Schedule to have any artificial nails removed. Studies show these hide germs.


2 weeks before surgery:

  • If you’re taking any type of blood thinner, notify your doctor and discuss how this may impact your upcoming procedure.
  • Weight loss medicine is another thing you should ask your doctor about leading up to surgery.


3-7 days before surgery:

  • Our registration staff will call to verify your personal/insurance information.


5 days before surgery:

  • Follow the bathing instructions your doctor gives you.


1 day before surgery:

You will receive a call from our team between 12-3 p.m. to discuss your surgery time and to go over the following:

  • Any medications you’re taking.
  • Surgery history.
  • Anesthesia history.
  • Procedure site.
  • Any orders for labs/EKG/chest X-ray.
  • Bathing instructions.
  • Medications to take day of surgery.
  • When to stop eating/drinking.
  • Any questions or concerns you may have.


Night before:

  • Shower or bathe, following any specific instructions your doctor gave you.
  • Brush your teeth.
  • Remove any nail polish.
  • Follow any special medication instructions.
  • Get a good night’s rest.


Day of Surgery:

  • Shower or bathe.
  • Brush your teeth.
  • Wear clean, loose fitting clothing.
  • Remove all jewelry/piercings and leave them at home.
  • Do not wear makeup or lotion.
  • Wear glasses, no contacts.
  • Be ready to tell the nurse the amount and time you took the last dose of any medication.


Bring this:

  • List of current medications you’re taking, including the name, amount, dose, and frequency.
  • Any paperwork from your surgeon or lab.
  • Photo ID and insurance card.
  • Copy of Living Will or Medical POA.
  • Brace, sling, or crutches if necessary.
  • Co-payment/deductible if necessary.


Eat this, drink this:

Fasting instructions:

  • For adults over 12 years old or over 110 pounds, nothing to eat or drink (including gum, candy, or lozenges) after midnight the evening before surgery, unless instructed otherwise by your doctor.
  • For children 12 and under, you will receive specific instructions during your previous appointments.
  • Take medications as instructed with a small sip of water only.
  • Your surgeon will notify you of any other special diets before surgery.

There you have it! Reach out to your surgeon’s office will any other questions you may have.