What to Expect at the Hospital Before Surgery

Once admitted to the hospital, it is customary for the anesthetist to make a preoperative visit. At that time, he or she will review your case, perform a brief physical exam, and discuss the various anesthetic options available to you. The discussion should include relative benefits, limitations, and risks associated with each type of anesthetic. If you have a complicated medical/surgical history or have questions or worries, ask your surgeon and his/her office personnel to assist you in contactiong your anesthitist, in advance of your surgery.

Your medical, surgical and prior anesthetic histories are important for your anesthetist to know. If you have or have had high blood pressure, heart disease, asthma, diabetes, lung, liver, or kidney problems, or other serious conditions or diseases, be sure to notify your anesthetist. Allergies and intolerances to drugs and your current drug therapy are also important. To make sure that complete and accurate information about you is communicated to your anesthesia team, please complete the pre-anesthesia questionnaire at the end of this booklet. You may be asked to answer the same questions again during face-to-face interviews. This is to double-check your written answers, allow you to correct any mistakes and explain any complicated situations or concerns.

After carefully considering the nature of your surgery, your overall health, medical history, the results of your lab tests, and your own concerns and preferences, the final decision about the type of anesthesia that is safest and best for you will be made.

On the day of surgery, the hospital nurses and personnel will prepare you for your operation. You may be given a sedative to relieve anxiety. Other medications may also be ordered to prepare you for surgery.