Before Your Surgery
- Discuss all of the medications, including vitamins and herbal supplements that you take with your physician before your admission.
- When you know the date of your surgery, let your Insurance Company know to ensure that pre-certification has been authorized and to review medical benefits with you.
- Your physician may direct you to visit Hartford Hospital’s Assessment Center for blood work, any necessary pre-operative testing and review of health history information and insurance coverage.
The Night Before Your Surgery
- DO NOT eat or drink after midnight.
- Follow your physician’s directions about what to do the night before surgery (i.e.: taking any medications in the morning before surgery).
- A nurse from the Assessment Center will call you the night before your surgery to answer any questions.
The Morning of Surgery
- Come to North 8 Nurse’s Station two hours before your scheduled surgery and the Patient Administrative Assistant will confirm your admitting information.
- If you have had anything to eat or drink since midnight tell someone.
- You will be admitted by a RN. She will complete the pre-operative paper work, review teaching, insert an intravenous (IV) catheter and give any medications ordered by your physician.
- You will meet your anesthesiologist before your surgery in the pre-operative waiting area.
- A family member can go with you to the pre-operative waiting area.
- You will be in the Recovery Room for about 1 – 4 hours.
- You will go back to your room on a stretcher and will be helped into your bed.
- You will have an IV in your arm to give you fluids until you can drink liquids.
- You may have a urinary catheter to empty your bladder.
- You may have special leg stockings on to help with circulation in your legs until you are up and walking.
Tips for Surgery
- To help prevent complications after surgery, we would like you to be actively involved in your care.
- It is important to breathe deeply and cough after surgery. You may be taught how to use a special device called an incentive spirometer to help you to breathe deeply to prevent pneumonia and other related complications.
- If you have an incision, put a pillow against it while coughing for added comfort.
- Each shift, it is important to walk as much as possible, even at night. A nurse or PCA will assist you until you can walk alone. Walking is important to help with circulation and the return of normal bowel function – passing gas and bowel movements.
- Once you can, drink plenty of liquids.
- Pain medication is available as needed, as ordered by your physician.
- Ask your nurse for medicine for pain or nausea when needed.
- Take only the medicine given to you by your nurse.
- Bring a list of all medications that you take and the time you take them.
- Do not bring money, jewelry, credit cards or any other valuables to the hospital.
- We supply soap, lotion, powder, and mouthwash.
- You may want to bring toothpaste and a toothbrush, shampoo, brush, deodorant, lightweight robe, underwear and bra, night clothes, slippers, magazines, books and other needed items.