Preparing your Child for Surgery
Calming Kids, Easing Fears
Surgery can be scary for both children and their parents. We want you
to know what to expect and how to help your child feel less anxious
What happens prior to surgery?
A nurse will call you at home to get your child's health history.
This is the time to tell us if you are interested in Parent Present
Parent Present Induction
Some children don't like to be separated from mom or dad. That's why
we offer you the option of Parent Present Induction. It allows either
mom or dad to remain with the child until the anesthetic takes effect
and the child is asleep. Parent Present Induction is not
always best, so your anesthesia provider will evaluate you and your
child to decide if it is appropriate. If you prefer not to be in the
operating room while your child falls asleep, we
understand. Parent Present Induction is entirely your choice.
What do I do the day of surgery?
You will need to put on operating room clothes over your street
clothes if you are participating in Parent Present Induction. You may
carry or walk with your child
back to the operating room. Once you are in the operating room, you
should be aware there is a lot of equipment. But your focus should be on
Stages of Anesthesia
A clear mask is gently placed over your child's face to breathe into. It
usually takes just a few minutes for your child to fall asleep.
First Stage: Your child may feel silly and lightheaded as he or she starts to lose consciousness.
Second Stage: Your child may appear agitated or excited, and his or her eyes may flutter or roll back. All of this is normal.
Third Stage: Your child is unconscious and feeling no sensation.
Most surgeries are performed in this stage of anesthesia. Once your
child is sleeping, we will escort you back to the waiting area until
surgery is complete.
What happens after surgery?
Your child will be taken to the recovery area after surgery. Nurses will
take your child's vital signs frequently. They will also get a report
from the anesthesiologist, check the doctor's orders, record
observations and give pain medication as needed.
When may I visit my child?
Don't be alarmed if we don't call you back to see your child immediately
after surgery. We monitor your child continually, and we'll let you
know just as soon as your child is comfortable and awake enough to see
How will my child look?
Your child will have monitors, oxygen and possibly an IV (intravenous
line). Your nurse will explain them all to you. Some children may cry,
scream or kick. Others may be quite sleepy or unaware that you have
rejoined them. Each child is different, so please don't worry. These are
normal reactions to anesthesia and surgery.
What can I do for my child?
We encourage you to speak to, touch and comfort your child. You may want to bring your child's favorite movie (VHS) or drink.
How soon can my child go home after surgery?
That depends on the type of surgery. Generally, your child will be ready
to go home when he or she is stable, drinking fluids, not bleeding and
able to recognize family members. If your child needs to stay overnight
in a hospital, a doctor will make that determination.
Pediatric Pre-Op Party
The Allen Ambulatory Surgery Center at United Medical Park hosts a
Pediatric Pre-Op Party Tuesday evenings from 5 - 6 p.m. We encourage you
and your child to attend. The Pediatric Pre-Op Party introduces your
child to the Surgery Center in a fun, relaxed atmosphere. Kids get to
visit the operating room, put on surgical hats and gowns and handle
surgical items they've never seen before. Kids even get to operate on
Zoey the doll. The Pediatric Pre-Op Party is for both kids and parents.
We encourage you to join us and ask us anything you like. We want you
and your child to have the best experience possible at the Surgery
Center, and the Pediatric Pre-Op Party helps everyone relax more and
worry less. Call (319) 833-5800 to sign up.