This page will provide important information on how to prepare for your surgery, what to expect once you arrive and how to plan for your post-surgical care. Your surgeon will talk with you about the type of surgery you are having and how long you are expected to stay in the facility. If you have any questions about your upcoming surgery do not hesitate to ask your physician. Our goal is to make your stay at hospital as pleasant and safe as possible. Therefore, we ask that you take the time to read these instructions and complete all necessary paperwork and testing before arriving at the hospital. This will help to minimize delays on the day of your surgery.
A complete set of instructions about your pre-surgical testing requirements will be given to you by your doctor. A physical examination is required within 30 days of surgery by a New York State licensed physician. The physical examination may be performed in the Pre-surgical Testing Center located on the 4th floor of MEETH on 64th Street, or may be scheduled at another facility such as your surgeon's or physician's office. If your surgeon would like you to visit our pre-surgical testing center, the pre-admission appointment should take place at least two weeks prior to your surgery.
A nurse practitioner or physician will review your health history, perform your physical exam and explain what testing is necessary before your surgical procedure. Preoperative testing such as blood tests, an electrocardiogram and chest x-ray may be necessary based on your age and overall health. A registered nurse will provide you with preoperative instructions and answer your questions. Please have the following items available at the time of your pre-admission appointment:will review your health history, perform your physical exam and explain what testing is necessary before your surgical procedure. A registered nurse will provide you with preoperative instructions and answer your questions.
Please have the following items available at the time of your pre-admission appointment:
- Your insurance information and photo ID such as a drivers license or passport
- If you have a hyphenated name please bring a legal document which has both names
- Any outside lab, EKG, x-ray, or cardiology results and reports.
- List of medications that you are currently taking along with their dose and frequency. If you are unsure of names or doses of medications please bring the bottles of medications you take to our facility. Be sure to include over-the-counter and herbal supplements.
- Guardians/Conservators: Guardians of a child under the age of 18, or conservators acting as the legal representative of an adult patient who is unable on consent to his/her own behalf, must bring documentation such as legal guardianship or documented healthcare proxy that establishes them as a person authorized to make healthcare decisions for that patient.
- No solid food or liquids after midnight the day of surgery. This includes candy, chewing gum and lozenges. Brushing teeth is allowed, but please do not swallow any water.
- If you are taking medications of any kind, consult with your physician about specific instructions regarding your medication schedule prior to surgery. If you have any questions regarding medications that you are allowed to take the morning of the surgery please call Anesthesia at 212-702-7373 before 4PM.
- A responsible adult must be available to discuss your homecare instructions and to accompany you home. Please note that you may not go home alone in a taxi or on public transportation. It is strongly suggested that you have someone stay with you during the first 24 hours. Please arrange to have an escort accompany you home. Please be advised that your surgery may be cancelled if you do not have an escort to safely accompany you home.
- All females of child bearing age will be given a urine pregnancy test prior to their surgery.
- Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothes. Do not wear pull over shirts or sweaters if you are having surgery of your head, neck, shoulder, or arms.
- Do not wear makeup, cream, perfume, aftershave, hairspray, or nail polish the day of surgery
- Do not wear jewelry, including body piercing, wedding rings, etc. Limited locker space will be made available for your belongings.
- If you wear dentures, contact lenses, eye glasses, or other prosthesis you will be asked to remove them prior to surgery. Since these personal items can be misplaced, please keep them in appropriate cases or containers when not in use. We advise that you give them to the person escorting you.
- Please shower and wash your hair the night before or the morning of surgery.
- No solid food after midnight the day of surgery. For infants less than 6 months of age milk is allowed up to four hours prior to surgery and within 6 hours for infants greater than 6 months of age. Clear fluids are allowed up to three hours prior to surgery for all age groups. Clear liquids include water, any clear juices with no pulp of liquids including soda, apple juice, or cranberry juice.
- A parent or legal guardian must be available to discuss homecare instructions.
- Your child should wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothes or pajamas. They will be provided with appropriate clothing for their surgery.
- If your child is taking medications of any kind, consult with your pediatrician about specific instructions regarding taking medication prior to surgery.
- It is often recommended that you bring a favorite toy, book or blanket to help ease your child’s mind if they are nervous about surgery.
- All legal guardians of a minor child under the age of 18, a mentally compromised adult or a foster child undergoing surgery must bring all legal/court documentation verifying his or her legal guardianship of the patient. Without legal proof of guardianship, the surgery will have to be rescheduled.
- Parents/guardians must stay on the premises at all times until minors are discharged.
Call your surgeon immediately if:
- There are any changes in your child’s condition, such as fever, rash, cough or cold
- Your child recently had an infection
Ask your surgeon/primary doctor if and when you should stop taking any of your regular medicines before your surgery or procedure, including vitamins, over-the-counter medications and herbal preparations.
- If you are taking blood-thinning medicines or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines, call your surgeon/primary care doctor and ask if and/or when you should stop taking them before your surgery or procedure.
- If you are taking medicines for diabetes, call your surgeon/primary doctor and ask when you should stop taking these medicines before your surgery or procedure.
- If you are taking insulin, ask your surgeon/primary care doctor about the dosage (amount) and type of insulin you should take, or whether you should temporarily discontinue taking your insulin, before your surgery or procedure.
- If you are taking medicines for blood pressure or heart medicines, call your surgeon/primary care doctor and ask when you should stop taking them before your surgery, test or procedure.
Fill New Prescriptions
Ask your surgeon if you should fill new prescriptions, including pain medicine, before your surgery or procedure.
Your comfort and privacy are our main priority. You will be provided with a heated gown for your comfort and your belongings will be placed in a locker. Our goal is to make sure that your surgery or procedure is on time, but we will keep you informed if any delays occur.
You will be escorted to a waiting area near the operating room where we will review your health history, plan of care, and be available to discuss any concerns you may have about your procedure. You will be asked to sign an anesthesia and surgical consent form and your surgeon will use a marker to mark where you will be having surgery. Your surgeon leads the operating room team including nurses, an anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist, and a surgical assistant. As a team, they provide a sterile and safe surgical environment.
Anesthesia not only provides the patient with a safer operating experience, but it also provides the patient with freedom of the sensation of pain during their procedure. The Department of Anesthesiology at MEETH is comprised of only board certified Anesthesiologists and certified nurse anesthetists trained in all aspects of anesthesia care. Many of our anesthesiologists have had further training and have received fellowships for specific types of surgery including pediatric surgery, regional orthopedic surgery and pain management. Our physicians utilize the latest technology and most advanced techniques with proven track records of patient safety. You will have the opportunity to speak with your anesthesiologist in order to determine the best and safest type of anesthesia for your surgical procedure.
In the Recovery Room
After surgery, a recovery room stay may be required depending on the type of anesthesia you have received. Your anesthesiologist will direct the monitoring and medications needed for your safe recovery. During this period, you may be given extra oxygen, and your breathing and heart function will be observed closely. You may feel drowsy and cold or you may have some pain, which is normal after surgery. Recovery room nurses will take care of your needs and make you comfortable.
In the Discharge Area
You will be discharged from the ambulatory surgery Unit according to your surgeon’s orders and with your escort accompanying you. If you live alone, it is recommended that you arrange for someone to stay with you following your surgery. You will be provided with written and verbal homecare instructions. Please review your discharge instructions to become familiar with them and please ask us any questions you may have.
10 Tips to Help Us Keep You Safe During Your Stay:
- Make sure every healthcare team member who cares for you checks your name band. Please help us by keeping your identification bracelet in place until discharge.
- Ask us any questions you may have and discuss your concerns. Ask a family member or friend to speak for you if you are not able to speak for yourself.
- Let us help you out of bed until we know you are steady on your feet, as we do not want you to fall.
- Give us complete and correct information about your health history, personal habits (such as alcohol use or smoking) and diet.
- Make sure we know what medicine(s) you take. This includes what is ordered by a doctor and what you take on your own (such as aspirin, cold remedies, vitamins, herbs and diet supplements).
- Don’t be afraid to ask about your medications and what types of side effects you may feel.
- Find out why a test or treatment is needed and how it may help you.
- Ask your doctor about the results of your tests. Do not assume that "no news is good news."
- Feel free to ask healthcare team members if they have washed their hands before they provide care to you. Good hand washing is still the best and most simple way to prevent the spread of germs.
- Be sure you know what to expect when you go home and know what to report to your doctor.
Every patient has the right to receive treatment without discrimination based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, gender identity, gender expression or disability, in addition to other important rights. Learn more about your rights as a patient here