The Day of Surgery

Medications

Make sure you understand the instructions your doctor or nurse gave for taking medications prior to surgery. There may be some medications you should stop taking.

Eating and drinking

It is extremely important to follow instructions for eating and drinking because your surgery or procedure could be canceled or postponed if you don't observe the stated restrictions.

  • Adults (age 13+): Nothing to eat or drink after midnight. This includes gum, candy and water. No smoking the day of your surgery.
  • Children: No solid foods, candy or gum after midnight. Children may have clear liquids up to four hours before surgery unless otherwise directed. Clear liquids include clear carbonated beverages, water and apple juice (not cider).
  • Infants: If your child is nursing, you can breastfeed or give breast milk until four hours before surgery. Infants who drink cow's milk, soy milk or formula must stop drinking six hours before surgery.

Note: It can be hard to explain to children why they can't eat or drink on the day of surgery. Be prepared with plenty of distractions for your child, such as books, toys and hugs. It's also helpful to keep food and drink out of sight.

What to wear

On the day of surgery, bathe yourself or your child. Dress in loose comfortable clothes. Remove make-up and all nail polish and leave jewelry including wedding bands at home. Wear glasses rather than contacts (contacts must be removed) and bring a glasses case.

What to pack

If you're arriving for an outpatient procedure, please keep bags to a minimum. You may want to bring a book or magazine. If you'll be staying in the hospital overnight, please bring your own sleepwear, slippers, crutches and slings, CPAP/BiPAP supplies, inhalers, toiletries and loose comfortable clothes (to wear home). For children, a special toy or blanket is suggested to help them feel more comfortable while in the hospital.

Remember: Bring your insurance and Medicare cards and your 'Preparing for Surgery' form with you.

Coming to the hospital

Plan on arriving at the hospital one and a half to two hours before your scheduled surgery time unless directed otherwise. You can park on Level 4 of the North Parking structure. Free valet parking is also available from 5:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday at the SurgiCare entrance.