Pre-Anesthesia Evaluation Services
Preparing for Surgery
We know that preparing for your surgery can be overwhelming. We're here to help.
Use the information and resources below as your guide to prepare for both your procedure and your recovery. And if you have any questions, you can always feel free to reach out to us.
Before your surgery
Prior for your procedure, one of our skilled pre-anesthesia registered nurses will call you with instructions and answer any questions you may have.
To prepare for this call, please have the following items available:
- A list of your current medications and doses
- Pen and paper to take notes
- Your health history, including allergies and known medical conditions
Your doctor may request lab work or other pre-operative testing prior to your procedure. Please arrange to complete these tests within 14 to 30 days ahead of your scheduled surgery.
Preparing for your surgery or procedure
Prepare for your surgery by following our tips.
- Provide your surgeon and PAES team a contact number where you can be reached the day of surgery as arrival times may change
- Take only the medicine you have been told to take on the morning of your procedure
- Do not shave the surgical area for one week before surgery
- Bathe and brush your teeth before you come in
- Call your surgeon if you become sick or have cuts or rashes near the surgical site
- Wear loose-fitting clothes and flat shoes
- Be on time
- If you are age 17 or younger, a parent or guardian must come with you to the hospital and stay throughout the procedure
- If you are scheduled for an outpatient procedure, arrange for someone to take you home afterward
- Arrange for someone to stay with you for at least 24 hours when you return home
- If you will be staying overnight, select one adult loved one to stay the night as your care partner
Most importantly, do not eat or smoke after 11 pm the night before your procedure (unless otherwise instructed by your surgical team). This includes gum, breath mints, chewing tobacco and smoking. You may have noncarbonated clear liquids until 2 hours before your scheduled check-in time. Acceptable liquids include sports drinks (such as Gatorade), water (plain or flavored, but must be non-carbonated) and tea/coffee without milk or cream.
If you have diabetes, you may only drink noncarbonated (plain or flavored) water, Crystal Light or coffee/tea without milk or cream. Please test your blood sugar as directed by your doctor and treat hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) with regular (not diet) clear juice or glucose tablets. If your blood sugar has been low (less than 70mg/dl) or high (greater than 180mg/dl) during the 24 hours before surgery, please tell the nurse when you check in for surgery.
We recommend you consider taking the following steps to improve your recovery.
- Exercise: Your current condition may limit this but any exercise is good.
- Stop smoking: Any type of inhalation (cigarettes, vaping and recreational drugs) can increase mucus, which is linked to risk of breathing problems after surgery.
- Plan for your discharge before your surgery. Schedule someone to be with you after surgery to help around the house. Prepare easy meals for after surgery.
- Stop medications or supplements not prescribed by a doctor. Medications like Tylenol PM or Advil PM can cause confused thinking and reduced awareness after surgery.
- Notify your primary care doctor and/or cardiologist about your upcoming surgery.
How to prepare for colorectal surgery
How to prepare for obstetric and gynecologic surgery
What you should bring to the hospital
Please bring the following with you to the hospital:
- Copy of your Advance Directive
- List of medications and allergies (include vitamins and dietary supplements, as well as dosages), if not already given to the PAES nurse
- Copy of ID card for your pacemaker or implantable cardioverter defibrillator, if applicable
- Your glasses or contact lens case and solution (contact lenses may be removed before
After your surgery
If possible, pick up any prescriptions before your surgery. If you will be taking prescription pain pills, you may want to consider purchasing an over-the-counter stool softener, such as Colace.
If you are currently breastfeeding, you should refrain from breastfeeding for 24 hours after anesthesia. Some medications are safe to resume breastfeeding within 24 hours. Please review your medications with your nurse before you are discharged to determine if you are safe to resume breastfeeding.