Preparing For Your Surgery
If you and your doctor decide that surgery is necessary, you’ll need to learn what to expect from the procedure and create a treatment plan for the best possible results in recovery.
Mental and physical preparation for surgery is an important step toward a successful operation. Understanding the process and your role in it will help you recover quickly and reduce the risk of complications.
Before surgery, your doctor will conduct a physical examination to ensure you don’t have any conditions that will interfere with the surgery or its outcome. Routine tests, such as blood tests and X-rays, are usually performed a week before major surgery.
Here is a checklist to follow for your pre-surgery plan:
- Discuss any medications you are taking with your doctor to see if you need to stop taking them for the surgery. For example, anti-inflammatory medications should be stopped a week before surgery to minimize bleeding during the operation.
- Discuss options for preparing potential blood replacement, including donating your own blood, medical interventions, and other treatments.
- Smoking should be stopped or cut down prior to surgery to reduce risks and improve your recovery.
- Tooth, gum, bladder, or bowel problems should be treated before surgery to reduce the risk of infection.
- Eat a well-balanced diet supplemented by a daily multivitamin with iron.
- Report any infections to your surgeon. Surgery cannot be performed when infections are present.
- Arrange for someone to help out post-surgery with tasks like cooking, shopping, and laundry.
- Place items you use often within easy reach prior to surgery.
- Remove any loose carpets or electrical cords to avoid falls.
- Make sure you have a stable chair at home with a firm seat cushion, firm back, and two arms.
See Recovering After Your Surgery checklist>>