Frequently Asked Questions

Why is eating before surgery an issue?

Your body has reflexes that prevent food from being aspirated (into the lungs when it is swallowed or regurgitated). Anesthesia drugs can impair these reflexes, which can cause food to be inhaled into the lungs. This food may contain bacteria which can cause complications such as pneumonia when inhaled into the lungs. It is important not to eat or drink anything after midnight the day of your scheduled procedure, unless given direction by your physician or pre-operative phone nurse. This includes no water, food, gum, candy, or chewing tobacco. We recommend you avoid smoking prior to your surgery.


Can I leave my contacts in during surgery?

You are allowed to wear your contacts to the surgery center. You may be asked to remove them prior to the surgery. Please bring your contact case and solution.


Do I need to remove body jewelry before my surgery?

For your safety, please remove all jewelry, especially piercings before arriving for your surgery.


What is a MAC?

This type of anesthesia is used for short operations or those that do not go deep into the body. You will receive sedatives and painkillers through your IV to keep you relaxed and comfortable. You may even lightly sleep. The surgeon frequently injects local anesthesia at the site of your operation to make it numb.

You may receive oxygen through a plastic tube under your nose. The anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist will monitor your blood pressure, heart rhythm, and blood oxygen level throughout the surgery.


Could my surgery time change?

Surgery cases are scheduled based on multiple factors including length of surgery and the patient’s age and current health. At times, a surgery may take longer than expected which may delay your estimated start time.


Why do I have to arrive earlier than my scheduled surgery time?

The pre-operative phone nurse will call you the day before your surgery and confirm your arrival time. You will need to arrive approximately 1 – 2 hours prior to your scheduled surgery start time. This time is used to prepare you for surgery and allow time for surgical time changes.


Will I get medicine to help me relax?

You will be seen by an anesthesiologist prior to surgery to determine your need for relaxation medication.


Why do I have to stop diet supplements and vitamins?

Diet suppliments and vitamins can have interactions with anesthesia medications or affect certain body functions causing surgical complications.


Will I see my doctor before the surgery?

You will meet with your surgeon and anesthesiologist prior to your surgery.


Where will my family be while I’m in surgery?

Your family will be directed to wait in the lobby during your surgery. The surgeon will speak to your family following your procedure. The nurse will determine when the time is appropriate for your family to come back and visit.


What is an Advanced Directive?

An Advanced Directive is documentation of your wishes in relation to health care and end of life care, in case you are unable to express your desires because your illness has limited your capacity to do so.  It is only used for health care purposes and does not include wishes about financial or property issues.


Do I need an Advanced Directive to have my surgery?

No. You will be offered information regarding Advanced Directives if you do not currently have one. If you do have one, please bring a copy with you.


Will I need crutches?

Your surgeon will instruct you to use crutches if necessary. If you do not currently own crutches, arrangements can be made to help you obtain them.


When can I go back to work?

Your surgeon will tell you when it is safe for you to return to work or school.


Can I go back to the operating room with my child?

One parent is permitted to accompany his/her child back to the operating room. You can remain with your child until he/she is asleep. At that time, you will be directed to the lobby to wait for the surgeon to come speak with you.


Will my child have an IV?

Your child may need an IV depending on teh type of surgery to be performed. Timing of the IV placement will be determined by the doctor.


Do I need a pregnancy test?

Any female that is of childbearing age and/or menstruating will be required to have a pregnancy test.


Which medications do I take? Which medications do I stop?

The pre-operative phone nurse will instruct you which medications you may continue taking and which ones you must discontinue prior to surgery.


Does someone have to drive me home?

Yes, you will need a responsible adult to drive you home from your procedure. In addition, you will need an adult to stay with you for the next 24 hours following your surgery.


Do I need a follow up appointment with the surgeon?

Your surgeon will instruct you when to return for a follow up visit. This will be discussed prior to discharge.