What if I’m not feeling well?

If you are ill with fever, chest cold, vomiting or diarrhea just before the day of your surgery, please contact your surgeon’s office; he or she may contact us to discuss the possibility of postponing your procedure.

Should I wear contact lenses?

You will need to remove contact lenses before your procedure – as well as all jewelry and dental appliances. It’s also best to avoid wearing lipstick and eye makeup on the day of your procedure.

Can I smoke?

Avoid smoking for 24-48 hours prior to your procedure. There are many reasons to quit smoking as soon as possible and prior to your surgery. Your primary care doctor can help with this process and may suggest prescription or over-the-counter therapies.

What medications should I take?

Medications should be taken with a small amount of water on the day of your surgery. These may include:

  • Cardiac/heart medications
  • Most blood pressure medications (exceptions)
  • Cholesterol medications
  • Bronchodilators (inhaled medications for the lungs)
  • Acid reflux/heart burn medications
  • Anticonvulsants (anti-seizure medications)
  • Thyroid replacement medications
  • Steroids (Prednisone and others)
  • Parkinson’s Disease medications
  • Oral contraceptive pills
  • Opioids and narcotic medications (only if they do not contain aspirin or ibuprofen)

Medications and supplements to be avoided on the day of surgery:

  • Diuretics (fluid pills such as Lasix or hydrochlorothiazide)
  • Insulin
  • Oral diabetic medications (Metformin)
  • Aspirin
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (Motrin, Advil, ibuprofen, Mobic, Orudis, and others)
  • Weight reduction medications
  • Vitamins
  • Herbal medications or supplements

It is recommended to avoid the following for at least one week prior to surgery:

  • Garlic
  • Gingko
  • Ginseng
  • Vitamin E
  • Fish oil
  • Alfalfa
  • Chamomile
  • Kava
  • Licorice

The risks and benefits of taking aspirin, coumadin, Plavix, Eliquis and other blood thinners should be discussed with your prescribing physician (typically your primary care physician or cardiologist), your surgeon and your anesthesiologist well in advance of the date of your procedure. A decision on whether or not to continue these medications is best made jointly by the patient and all of the physicians involved.

What can I eat and drink?

It is generally accepted that patients should have nothing to eat or drink (referred to as “NPO”) after midnight on the evening prior to surgery. Exceptions to this rule are rare and should be discussed with your anesthesiologist. Infants who are breast feeding may have breast milk until four hours prior to surgery or infant formula until six hours before surgery. Although clear liquids may be allowed closer to the time of surgery, in the even that your surgeon is ahead of schedule, drinking could unnecessarily delay your procedure. It is often a good idea to stay well hydrated on the day prior to your surgery and avoid alcoholic beverages.

When will I meet the anesthesiologist?

For most elective procedures at Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center, your surgeon may arrange for a preoperative evaluation at the STAR Clinic. Regardless of the location of your procedure, the anesthesiologist responsible for your care will contact you the night before surgery and will discuss what you can expect the day of your surgery. They will also go over any anesthesia-related instructions related to your procedure. You will meet with your anesthesiologist and others from the surgical team on the day of your procedure. Your medical history and the anesthetic plan will be discussed, and you will have the opportunity to ask questions at that time.