Request an Appointment:
Online or Call 1-888-824-0200

Patient Surgery Guide

Getting Ready for Surgery -- What to Expect

Things Your Doctors, Nurses, and Healthcare Providers are Doing
Infection Prevention
Anesthesia to Keep You Comfortable
Your Arrival Time and How Long You Will be at the Hospital
Your Family and Visitors in the Hospital
Waiting for Your Child
Planning for Your Ride Home

Things Your Doctors, Nurses, and Healthcare Providers are Doing

Surgical site infections after surgery are possible in the part of your body where the surgery took place. Most patients who have surgery do not get an infection.

  • You may be given a special cleaning cloth to be used at home the night before and the morning of surgery. The cleaning cloth kills germs in the area where you will have surgery. At the time of your surgery we will also have this body area cleaned using a special soap that kills germs.
  • Depending on the kind of surgery, we may give you antibiotics before your surgery starts.
  • Some of your hair may be removed right before your surgery using electric clippers if the hair is in the same area where the surgery will be.

Back to Top

To Help Prevent Infections Your Surgery Team:

  • Will wash their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub before and after caring for each patient.
  • Will wash their hands and arms up to their elbows (surgical scrub) with an antiseptic agent just before the surgery.
  • Wears special hair covers, masks, gowns, and gloves during surgery to keep the surgery area clean.

Back to Top

Anesthesia to Keep You Comfortable

Anesthesia is a medicine to make you feel comfortable during surgery. Your doctor will decide what kind of anesthesia you will need.

  • One kind of anesthesia will keep you asleep and free from pain during surgery. This can be given from an IV, breathed in from a mask or from a tube placed in your throat.
  • Another kind of anesthesia will just numb the body area where the surgery will be done. When the area is numb you do not feel any pain and you are awake during the surgery.

Tell us if you or anyone in your family has ever had a problem with anesthesia.

Back to Top

Your Arrival Time and How Long You Will be at the Hospital

It is very important to arrive on time. You will not go directly into surgery. It will take some time to get you ready for your surgery and to see the surgical team.

How long you stay at the hospital depends on many things such as the kind of surgery you are having and your overall health. Some patients are admitted to the hospital after surgery and others will go home the same day.

Back to Top

Your Family and Visitors in the Hospital

On the day of surgery your family or visitors can wait in the patient reception area when they are not with you. Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult who is not the patient.

The patient reception area has large electronic information screens that track your progress from one area to another. Additionally, your family or visitors will receive a pager so our staff can reach them when needed.

Once you are ready for surgery, one to two visitors can stay with you in the holding area until you go into surgery.

Your doctor will talk with your family after your surgery. One to two visitors may be able to see you in the Recovery room when you are awake and ready for visitors.

Visiting hours are 24 hours a day as long as it does not get in the way of patient care and safety.

The hours and number of visitors can change depending on the unit you are in and your needs. Intensive care units limit visitors to two at one time.

Back to Top

Waiting for Your Child

If you are the parent or guardian of a child having surgery, you must be here
for your child whenever you are needed and when they wake up.

Back to Top

Planning for Your Ride Home

Most patients are discharged to go home on the day of surgery or at 12 noon the day after surgery. Whenever you go home, you will not be able to drive or take public transportation alone. You will need an adult to take you home or travel with you.

If you have sedation or anesthesia, an adult will need to be with you to get instructions for what you will need to do at home. You will need a responsible person to stay with you for 24 hours after surgery.

If you do not have anesthesia, we must be able to contact someone by phone to have them pick you up. We will need to have their contact information when you check in.

Back to Top