Preparing for Your Operation
You will be asked to fill out a patient questionnaire to provide us with important medical information. Please list all medical problems, medications and allergies.
Consent for Your Operation
You will sign a consent before your operation. This consent is a legal document that certifies that you understand and consent to your operative procedure. You surgeon will explain this information.
Tests Provide a Baseline of Information
Blood tests, electrocardiograms (ECGs) and x-rays may be required prior to your operation. These will be done in the office of your primary care provider, the laboratory or during your pre-operative clinic visit.
If you have had an ECG within six months and specific blood tests within 30 days prior to your operation, or you are scheduled for minor surgery, you may not need to have these tests repeated. Your surgeon will give you instructions. If these were done at another hospital or clinic you will need to work with your surgeon’s office to obtain them. Providing this information to your surgeon’s office may help us prevent repeating these tests.
If your surgeon advises you to donate blood, arrangements will be made well in advance of your operation. This blood will be stored for you and if needed will be given during or after your operation.
Interpreter services can be provided before and after your operation if you request them. Please let your surgeon’s office staff know if an interpreter will be needed so arrangements can be made in advance. This service is provided at no charge to you.
Pre-operative History and Physical Exam
A history and physical exam will be performed either by your surgeon or by a primary care provider within 30 days of your operation. This evaluation will help to assure that you are in the best possible condition before undergoing your operation. It will provide information to help your surgeon, anesthesiologist and nursing staff plan for the best management of your care, during and after your operation.
Pre-operative Anesthesia Evaluation
You may be given an appointment with an anesthesiologist in the Pre-operative clinic to discuss your anesthesia care. An anesthesiologist is a medical doctor trained in the specialty of anesthesia and pain management. The anesthesiologist will review medical history and discuss anesthetic options available. You will be given the opportunity to ask questions and discuss any concerns about your anesthetic.
The final decision about anesthesia will be made by you and your anesthesia care team on the day of your operation. The decision will take into account your preference, the type and duration of surgery, special requirements of your surgeon and your medical condition.
If you have no health problems and are scheduled for a minor operation, you have the option of not visiting the Pre-operative Clinic. In that case, your anesthesiologist will discuss the anesthetic with you the day of your operation. But please feel free to visit the Pre-operative clinic if you have any questions or concerns about your anesthesia.
There are three main kinds of anesthesia used to assure you comfort during your operation:
- Local anesthesia and monitoring: Some operations are performed using local anesthetics to numb a small area of the body (such as the eye for cataract surgery.) An anesthesiologist may perform the numbing procedure and may also provide you with sedation.
- Regional anesthesia: Regional anesthesia uses local anesthetics to numb a particular area of your body. Most patients who receive regional anesthesia also choose to receive sedation.
- General anesthesia: General anesthesia relieves pain by causing loss of consciousness. General anesthesia uses gases, intravenous drugs or a combination of the two. Frequently a breathing tube is inserted into your windpipe to assist with breathing. Some patients receive a combination regional anesthesia and general anesthesia to optimize comfort during and after surgery.