Preparing for surgery

 

Ask questions

Not every patient referred to us needs an operation.  If an operation is part of the plan to manage your illness, then there will be plenty of opportunity to ask any questions you may have.  

We will do our best to explain any common or significant complications that apply to your situation.  In addition, if there is anything else we feel would be particularly important to your health, we will aim to discuss this with you.  Prior to agreeing to surgery and giving your consent to undergo an operation, you should have had the opportunity to ask any other questions.

There is never a stupid question.  One of the aims of this website is to allow you to go over some of the key issues relating generally to your surgery, and therefore to act as a prompt to further discussion.  

Medication

Any medication that interferes with blood clotting usually needs to be stopped or its dose altered prior to surgery.  This includes warfarin, clopidogrel, aspirin ( and other NSAIDS) and some herbal medicines including fish oil.  Please notify us if you are taking any of these medications, as some requiring stopping 10 days prior to surgery.  Often, we will discuss this with either your Family Doctor or the Specialist who has prescribed the medication for you.

It is normal to take other medicines (including blood pressure) even on the day of surgery.  Diabetic medicine doses are usually adjusted lower on the morning of surgery, as you will be fasting.

Fasting

You will need to fast for at least 6 hours prior to surgery.  This will mean not eating or drinking (apart from a sip of water with normal medications) from midnight for morning surgery, and after early breakfast for an afternoon operation.  

If your surgery is in the Public Hospital, the Hospital will let you know of these timings.  If your surgery is in the Private Hospital, we will confirm the arrangements with you in the days prior to your operation.

What to bring

It is critical that you bring any xrays/scans or ultrasound films that relate to your condition.  Your surgery may have to be delayed if you forget any important films.