Preparing for Surgery

There are a number of guidelines to follow in preparing for surgery:

  • Please shower at home the evening before surgery, or in the morning
  • Please do not shave the surgical site! This will be done for you if necessary. Shaving yourself increases the risk of infection
  • For morning surgery, do not eat or drink anything after midnight the night before surgery unless otherwise instructed. This includes coffee, tea, water, and juice. Taking your medication with a small sip of water is ok
  • For afternoon surgery, a small breakfast BEFORE 7AM is OK, and nothing after that. Your surgery may be cancelled if you do not follow these instructions
  • Do not drink alcoholic beverages 24 hours prior to your surgery
  • Do not smoke for 4 weeks before surgery or your risk of serious complications increases
  • Ask your doctor if you are permitted to take your routine medications (such as those for heart, blood pressure, or insulin etc.) before arriving for surgery
  • Do not bring valuables such as money, jewellery etc. Do not wear make-up
  • Bring toiletries and loose fitting, comfortable clothing to wear upon discharge
  • You will be required to remove contact lenses, jewellery, dentures, and wigs
  • Arrange for a responsible adult to drive you home after discharge
  • Notify your doctor if there is a change in your condition prior to surgery (such as a cold, cough, fever or infection). If severe, your surgery may need to be postponed for your safety
  • stop all herbal medications 4 weeks before surgery unless discussed beforehand 

There are a few important steps to take the day of your surgery:

  • On the day of your surgery, report to hospital reception
  • If you have not already done so, you will meet your anaesthetist
  • After the operation, you will spend some time in the recovery room before going to the ward
  • After discharge, and as long as you are taking prescription pain medicine, you are not permitted to:
    • Drive a car nor operate power equipment
    • Drink alcoholic beverages
    • Sign important papers
  • Instructions regarding safe resumption of the above activities will be provided by your surgeon

For further information, please click here to visit the Healthdirect Australia website.

Antiplatelet Therapy

Click here for guidelines for the use of antiplatelet therapy in patients with coronary stents undergoing non-cardiac surgery.