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Patient Surgery Guide

The Day Before Surgery

Limiting Your Food and Liquids

You must have an empty stomach before any surgery that uses anesthesia. If you have food or fluid in your stomach during your surgery, you could vomit. This can cause serious problems including pneumonia and difficulty breathing.

Find and follow the Food and Drink Instructions Before Surgery in your My Surgery Folder. This will tell you when to stop eating your regular food and when to stop drinking all liquids.

Talk with your doctor about what you can and cannot eat and drink if you are diabetic or on a special diet. If you are not sure what foods or liquids you can or cannot have call the Anesthesia Department at 773-834-7255.

Your Personal and Skin Care Before Surgery

Shaving
Do not shave near the place where you will have surgery for at least 24 hours before the surgery. Shaving with a razor can irritate your skin and make it easier to get an infection.

Showering and Cleaning Your Skin
The night before surgery you should shower or take a bath using your normal soap. If your doctor told you to use disposable wipes or a special soap, follow the instructions for Getting Your Skin Ready For Surgery found in your Surgery Folder. Clean your skin with the wipes on the night before and the morning of your surgery. Sign the instruction form and bring it with you so that it can be placed in your medical record.

Skin
Do not use makeup, heavy lotion or hair products on the day of your surgery. Do not wear nail polish.

Teeth and Mouth
Brush your teeth in the morning on the day of your surgery.