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Surgery preparation


You will receive a call(s) from us before surgery to:

  • Tell you what time to come.
  • Give you instructions on when to stop eating/drinking.
  • Assess special needs.
  • Review current medications and verify your current medication dosages.
  • Answer questions.

We’ll be by your side every step of the way throughout your surgical experience. This document provides information to help you prepare for your telephone call.


The following guidelines are what most procedures require for pre-procedure fasting. Some procedures may require more stringent fasting instructions. Specific instructions will be given during your pre-admission phone call.

Infants and Children up to 12 Years of Age

  • Water – permitted up to two hours before arrival.
  • Breast milk – permitted up to four hours before arrival.
  • Formula and other liquids – permitted up to six hours before arrival.
  • Solid food – permitted up to eight hours before arrival.

Adults and Children 12 years of Age and Older

  • Solid food – permitted up to eight hours before arrival.
  • Clear liquids (water, coffee, fruit juice without pulp, Gatorade) permitted up to two hours before arrival.
  • May have sips of water to take with medicine as instructed.
  • Do not smoke after midnight or drink alcohol 24 hours before surgery.
  • Do not chew gum or suck on candy after midnight the night before your surgery.


  • Health plan information, photo ID and Medicare or Medical Assistance cards.
  • CPAP machine.
  • Comfortable, loose-fitting clothing that will fit over surgery dressings.
  • Eyeglass case or contact supplies.
  • If staying overnight, toiletries and other personal items.
  • Medications (eye drops, inhalers, rapid-acting insulin).
  • Green wrist band from the Lab, if provided with one.


  • Valuables: large amounts of cash, jewelry, etc.
  • Cash/credit card may be needed for medications prescribed after surgery and may be left with your loved one.
  • If you are unable to remove your rings, please see a jeweler to have them removed safely. Your procedure may be cancelled if you are unable to remove them.


  • Take a shower or bath the morning of surgery.
  • You may receive further instructions for cleansing.
  • Do not shave the surgical site.
  • Remove makeup and nail polish.


Please arrive at the time noted during your pre-procedure phone call.

Upon arrival, we will complete the admission process. You will change into a surgical gown and slippers. We will take your height, weight, temperature, blood pressure, pulse and respirations before surgery. A nurse will review your health history. A family member or friend may accompany you at any time during this process, as you desire. We will direct them to a nearby waiting room when your surgery starts.


We will talk to you about the plan for anesthesia and answer questions. When it is time for surgery, we will escort you to the operating room.


After surgery, we will take you to the recovery room. You will be closely monitored by a nurse. When you are ready, you will be reunited with your family member or friend. You will rest in a recliner and receive something to eat and drink.


Pain after surgery is normal. To help speed your recovery, we will assess and monitor you for pain. Our goal is for your pain management plan to keep your pain at a manageable level while you heal.


A nurse will monitor your physical readiness for home. Most patients are ready for discharge one to three hours after surgery. However, each patient is different. We will personalize your care to meet your needs and ensure you are educated on how to be successful after discharge.


All patients having procedures must be discharged in the care of a responsible adult driver. Not having a responsible adult driver will result in a cancellation of your procedure. We do not allow discharged patients to go home on public transportation, including bus or taxi unless accompanied by a responsible adult.

  • Drink plenty of clear liquids (water or juice) after your surgery.
  • For your safety, do not operate a motor vehicle or machinery, drink alcohol or take medicine not prescribed by your doctor, or sign legal documents for at least 24 hours after your surgery.
  • If you have small children, you may want someone to care for them.
  • Remember, pets can carry germs. Keep pets away from your incision, even if the incision is covered with a dressing.

Learn more about after care for your surgery here.

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