What to expect: Your surgery at Washington Hospital Center. A guide for outpatient and inpatient surgery. Your surgery at Washington Hospital Center.
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A guide for outpatient and inpatient surgery
We are a team of surgery specialists: surgeons, nurses, doctors and physician assistants. We are here to make your surgery experience as smooth as possible. This slideshow will give you information about what to expect both before and after surgery, whether you are having surgery as an outpatient or an inpatient.
The nurses from the Admissions Testing Center (ATC) will review your procedure and medical history. They will call you to confirm your tests:
Depending on your insurance, these tests may be completed at the Hospital Center in the ATC or at your insurance company’s designated provider.
If you feel sick, tell the nurse. It is not a good idea to have surgery when you are not well.
If you need to have blood transfusions, you will have previously discussed this with your doctor or the nurse from the ATC.
A nurse from the ATC will call you to confirm the time of your surgery. You can ask her any questions you may have.
Unless your doctor instructs otherwise, starting at midnight, NO eating, drinking, smoking, candy or gum.
Your doctor or the nurse from the ATC will give you special instructions regarding your regular medications, if you have any.
Do not shave the site of your surgery.
Dress in loose, comfortable clothing that you will be able to put on after surgery.
Leave valuables at home.
Arrive at the hospital at least two hours before your surgery.
Arrive at the hospital at least two hours before surgery.
You should bring a friend or family member with you. That person can stay with you until you are ready to go to the OR.
Register at the ATC. You will need your:
Government issued identification card
Health insurance card
Copayment, if necessary (payable by cash, check, or credit card)
You will receive a hospital ID bracelet
You will be checked before the procedure
Sick family members should not be present, because surgery patients are highly susceptible to infection
You will be picked up 90 minutes before the surgery. If you have any visitors, make sure they come 2 hours before your surgical time.
A family member may stay with you until you go into the OR.
Your doctor will come to see you to talk about your surgery.
You will be interviewed by the surgical nurse and anesthesiologist. These questions may seem repetitive, but they are important for identification purposes.
You will also sign some necessary forms before surgery.
Your surgical nurse will take your vital signs.
Your IV will be started with medication.
Your nurse will check your armband again.
You will need to remove all jewelry, eyeglasses or contact lenses.
If space permits, your family can wait with you.
Some of the same questions will be asked again, but they are important, so please answer them fully.
You will be picked up 90 minutes before the surgery.
If you have any visitors, make sure they come 2 hours before your surgical time.
You will be moved onto an OR bed and then into the OR. You can expectthe room to be cool. Many people will be present, and there will be many instruments and bright lights.
Relax and ask any questions that will help make you feel more comfortable.
During surgery, your vital signs will be monitored, including your blood pressure, heart rate and breathing.
You will receive oxygen through a mask and IV sleep medication.
After you are asleep, you may have a tube inserted down your throat to help with your breathing.
Your doctor will come talk to your family members to tell them about your surgery.
As you wake up from the anesthesia, you will be resting comfortably in the PACU, a semi-private area, where your vital signs will be monitored.
If you are in pain, please tell your nurses, so they can give you pain medication.
Your throat will be dry, so the nurses will give you ice chips.
Your family will be able to see you as soon as you are fully awake. This could take an hour. Your surgeon will come in and discuss the procedure with you.
Most patients stay in the PACU no longer than one to three hours.
You will be transferred from the PACU to a patient care unit, where you will be carefully monitored as you recover.
You will probably have a PCA pump, a machine that allows you to control the amount of pain medicine you can give yourself.
You must walk after surgery, as it helps prevent complications.
You may be on a special diet or clear liquids immediately following surgery.
Family can visit during each unit’s established visiting hours.
Once you are ready to go home, you will be discharged from the PACU.
The nurses will give you light refreshments and instructions for home.
You CANNOT drive yourself. We will not let you leave unless you have a responsible adult with you. Your surgery will be cancelled if you do not have a responsible adult with you.
Please follow your doctor’s instructions very carefully. If you have any questions, please contact the numbers you were given.