Preparing for Your Visit
To further discuss your surgical options call (317) 462-5544 to find out more or schedule consultation.
Come to your surgical consultation with any questions you have about the procedure, the proper preparation, and your recovery. Bring a family member or friend along; having someone to take notes and ask questions can be helpful. Write down questions beforehand and take notes during the appointment. Here’s a list of questions to get you started:
- How long will I be in the operating room?
- When will I be able to go home after my surgery?
- Will you talk to my family after surgery?
- Will I need lab tests and x-rays before surgery?
- Will I take any special medication before or after surgery?
- Will I be on a special diet before or after surgery?
- How long should I plan to be off work?
- How long until I feel normal?
- Will I need assistance at home, or can I care for myself?
- Will I need pain medication at home?
- When do I come back for a follow-up visit?
Several days prior to your surgery you will receive a call from our “PASS” (Pre-Admission to Surgical Services) team. PASS nurses will ensure that you are prepared and informed about your experience as a surgical patient.
Before Your Surgery
- Get a good night’s rest.
- Do not eat, drink, or smoke after midnight the day before surgery.
- Make arrangements in advance for someone to take you home. If you are going home immediately after surgery, you will not be allowed to drive.
- We recommend you do not bring children with you the day of surgery.
The Day of Your Surgery
Before You Leave Home
- Do not wear fingernail polish or makeup, and remove all jewelry and body piercings.
- Wear loose, casual clothing that is easy to get on and off. We recommend slip-on shoes, and we’ll provide a change of clothing for your procedure.
- Do not bring pajamas, robes, or slippers unless you will be spending the night with us after your surgery.
Arriving at the Hospital
- Be sure to arrive at the time noted on your pre-operative instructions. Leave yourself enough time to find parking and get to registration.
- You will enter the hospital from the main entrance on State Street.
- Go to the information desk located right inside the door. Our volunteers will direct you to registration.
Registration and Prep for Same-Day Surgery
- After registration, a nurse will take you back to the Same-Day Surgery area.
- The nurse will ask you some questions, get any needed lab tests, and instruct you to change your clothes. Family and friends may visit you following these preparation activities.
- If you are having a procedure that requires anesthesia, your anesthesiologists will visit and discuss your anesthetic options and plan of care.
- If you would like to speak to our hospital chaplain prior to your procedure, please inform your nurse of your wishes.
During and Immediately After Surgery
- During your surgery, friends or family will wait in the Same-Day Surgery waiting area.
- After your surgery is finished, your surgeon will speak with those accompanying you.
- We recommend that friends or family take notes on the results of your procedures, as you may not remember what your surgeon says due to the anesthetic.
- You may go to the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) to recover from your anesthetic. When you wake up, the nurses will tell you where you are and that your surgery is over. You may have blurred vision, dry mouth, chills, and other symptoms, depending on the procedure you had.
- If you are having pain or other symptoms of discomfort, please tell your nurse. We will do everything possible to make you more comfortable.
- The nurse will monitor your blood pressure, temperature, and the oxygen in your blood as you awaken. You may receive oxygen through a small tube that goes around your head and past your nose.
- Your time in PACU will vary, depending on the type of surgery you had and how you respond to the anesthetic. Most people leave PACU in about an hour, but some stay up to three hours.
Self-Care After Surgery
Patients recover more quickly in familiar settings. Before you go home, make sure you understand your surgeon’s instructions. Some general guidelines:
- Start with a clear liquid diet and progress to your normal diet as you feel like eating. If you experience nausea and/or vomiting, avoid solid food until the feeling passes.
- Follow your surgeon’s recommendations for activity. Regardless of the parameters, proceed slowly.
- If you have a dressing, keep it clean, dry, and intact. Some drainage or bleeding is normal. If your dressing becomes soaked, please contact your physician.
- Call your surgeon if any of the following occur:
- Persistent nausea or vomiting beyond 24 hours post-operation
- Inability to urinate within 8 hours of surgery
- Pain unrelieved by ordered pain medication
- Temperature greater than 101 degrees F
- Excessive drainage or bleeding at your incision
After your return home, you receive follow-up calls from your surgery team and your physician’s office. Call 911 if you have a medical emergency. Otherwise, contact your surgeon’s office for follow-up. Our staff wants your surgical experience to be safe and comfortable. Please do not hesitate to ask for anything you need.
Want to learn more about surgery at Hancock? Explore our surgery site.
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