Pre-Operative Instructions

What to Expect

This information will help you prepare for your surgery and for the early post-operative recovery period. Included here are general instructions to prepare for surgery and to help you the day of surgery. Specific instructions will also be provided based on the procedure you are to have. If you have any questions before or after surgery, you should always feel free to call the office (614) 604-7820.

The plan for surgery will have been determined well before your surgical date. If you have any questions about your surgical plan you should call the office as soon as possible before your planned surgery date.

Pre-Surgical Testing is appropriate for most patients and must be done within 30 days of your planned surgery. This can be done at a facility, hospital, or with your primary care doctor. Our office staff will help you arrange this.

If your procedure requires post-operative compression garments, they will be provided by the facility on the day of surgery.  

Please review our current list of medications to avoid before surgery (you can find this information on our website). Many medications contain aspirin and other compounds that might increase your risk of bleeding during and after surgery. Keep in mind that many over the counter medications and herbal medications can increase bleeding risk as well. This increases the chance of developing a hematoma (blood collection) and more bruising than is necessary.  If you are on any medication that needs to be halted around the time of surgery (e.g. blood thinners) you should have received instructions for doing so. If you have not, please call within 10 days of surgery for direction.

The facility will contact you in the late afternoon regarding arrival time for your surgery.  Due to the facilities coordination of operating room schedules, we are not able to give you an arrival time.  We understand this is often inconvenient, however emergent cases often create scheduling conflicts that require changes.  The surgeon’s office has no control of this.

Report any changes in your health status that might affect your response to surgery or anesthesia. Pay particular attention to any colds, flu or upper respiratory infections, skin infections or sores around the surgical site. Call our office at (614) 604-7820 if you feel anything might be an issue.

Arrange for a ride to and from the hospital or surgery center. Ambulatory patients having surgery with a MAC (monitored anesthesia care) or general anesthetic REQUIRE A DRIVER. This is hospital policy and failure to arrange this may lead to an unnecessary hospital admission or cancellation of surgery.

No Smoking 60 days before surgery and at least 30 days following surgery.

Avoid alcoholic drinks for 24 hours before surgery.

Take all medication as normally directed the day before surgery, with the exception of blood thinners that will be managed differently.

You should have NOTHING by mouth starting at midnight the night before surgery. This includes food, liquids, coffee or tea, chewing gum, hard candy, etc.  Please take nothing by mouth even if your surgery is scheduled late in the day in the event that your surgery time is moved to an earlier time. You MAY take your routine medications with a small sip of water. You may brush your teeth with a small amount of water to rinse.

You should discuss with your doctor how to manage all of your medications. Some will be taken as normally directed, others will be held (e.g. blood thinners), and others may be modified (e.g. insulin, blood pressure medications). Please bring a list of all your medications, including vitamins and herbal supplements, with you to surgery.

Have family or a friend drive you to your surgery and stay at the facility until you are ready to be discharged.

Please be on time for your scheduled surgery. If you find that you will be late or need to cancel surgery, please call the office at (614) 604-7820.

Bring cases for holding glasses, contacts, and non-permanent dental appliances. You will need to remove these items for surgery.

Wear comfortable clothing that is appropriate for storing in a locker during your surgery and recovery.

Do NOT wear jewelry including rings, earrings, body jewelry, tongue piercings, etc.

Do NOT wear wigs or hairpieces. Do NOT use hairspray. Do NOT wear clips, pins, rubber bands or barrettes.

Remove false nails, tips and wraps from at least one finger, preferably the index or middle finger. This will enable the anesthesiologist to accurately measure your oxygen levels during surgery.

Do NOT wear makeup, perfume, nail polish, creams, lotions or deodorant the day of surgery. You should bring your personal care items with you, however, if your surgery requires an overnight stay or admission.

Do NOT bring valuables, credit cards or a large amount of money. You might want to bring a small amount of money and your prescription card if it is necessary to fill prescriptions.

If you have ASTHMA, bring all your inhalers with you the day of surgery. You should use your inhalers as usual if you need to.

If you have DIABETES, you should discuss this with your surgeon ahead of time. If you have not or have any questions, you should call the office before surgery at (614) 604-7820.

If you are HEARING IMPAIRED, you should wear your hearing aids the day of surgery so that we can accurately communicate with you.

If you require any WALKING AIDS, you should bring these with you the day of surgery.

Once you arrive at the surgery center or hospital, please check in with the receptionist. Once you are brought back to the surgical preoperative area, the staff will ask you about your current health, any known allergies and medications that you are taking. Your vital signs (temperature, pulse, blood pressure) will be taken.

You will be asked to change into a hospital gown and your belongings will be stored appropriately.

An intravenous line (IV) will be started to administer fluids and may be used to provided anesthesia or other medications, unless you are having a local anesthetic only case. The anesthesiologist will review one last time your history and talk to you about your anesthetic plan. One of the nurses who will be in the room with you will come and introduce themselves. You may find that several people ask the same questions multiple times. This is normal and designed to avoid medical errors. Please be patient.

You will also have the opportunity to see and talk to Dr Zochowski in the pre-operative area. 

Once your surgery begins, your visitors may wait in the surgical waiting area. Visitors should

check in and out with the receptionist so that messages about your status can be relayed to them. It is also appropriate to leave a  mobile phone number  with the receptionist and surgical team. If possible, please leave small children at home.

Just before going into the operating room, the anesthesiologist usually will give you some sedation that will help you relax. You may or may not remember anything after this. Once in the operating room, the room may feel cool. Warm blankets will be provided for your comfort. The Surgical team will be dressed in surgical gowns and scrubs and will be wearing caps and masks. They will be opening sterilized instruments and setting up the room.  This may sound somewhat noisy to you.  Meanwhile, your anesthesia team will be applying monitors and blood pressure cuffs. You will be anesthetized soon after that.

At the completion of the case, your incisions will be dressed; you will be awakened in the operating room and transferred to a hospital bed. Still drowsy, you will be transferred to the recovery room where nurses will monitor your recovery. You may notice them place an oxygen mask on your face and adjust your IV’s and drains if they are needed. These nurses will also frequently check your operative site and may adjust or change your dressings. They will treat your pain according to instructions provided by your anesthesiologist and surgeon. If you experience any nausea, they will help manage this as well.

It is common and normal to experience some drowsiness, nausea, sore throat, dry mouth and thirsty feelings.

If your surgery is scheduled as outpatient, you will finish your recovery when you have become alert, your vital signs are normal and you are comfortable. Upon discharge, the nurse will give you helpful specific written information and verbal instructions for your post-surgery care.

Please follow these instructions for a comfortable and safe trip home:

  • A relative or friend MUST accompany you when you are discharged
  • Someone should stay with you for at least 24 hours after surgery
  • Progress gradually from clear liquids to solid foods
  • To clear your lungs, take deep breaths and cough 10 times each hour
  • Advance your activity according to your doctor’s instructions
  • Do NOT drive or operate a car or machinery for 24 hours after surgery and not until you no longer taking narcotic medications for pain
  • Do NOT drink alcoholic beverages for 24 hours after surgery
  • Do NOT make important decisions or sign any important documents for 24 hours after surgery.

Pre-Operation Medications to Avoid

The following is a list of common medications to avoid one to two weeks prior to your surgery. This list is meant as a general guide and is not comprehensive. If you have questions about any medication you are taking or considering, consult with your physician at (614) 604-7820. There is an alphabetized list at the end of this document for quick reference.

  • Anti-Neoplastic:  Arimidex Nolvadex Tamoxifen
  • Anti-Coagulants: Coumadin, Heparin, Plavix, Pletal, Aggrenox
  • Ibuprofen Containing Medications: Indocin, Motrin, Advil
  • Ketolorac Containing Medications: Ketolorac, Toradol
  • Naproxen Containing Medications:  Naprosyn,  Anaprox/Anaprox DS, Naprogesic, Novo-Naprox Sodium, Darvon, Propoxyphene, Equagesic, Fiorinal, Lortab, Norgesic, Percodan, Soma, Talwin Compound Trilisate
  • NSAID Compounds: Feldene, Lodine, Daypro, Genacol, Indocin, Nuprin, Voltaren
  • Aspirin and Aspirin-like compounds
  • Anacin products
  • Bayer aspirin products: Ascriptin, Aspergum, Aspercream, Bufferin, Buffaprin, Doan’s Pills Ecotrin, Midol
  • St. Joseph aspirin products
  • Ibuprofen Containing Medications/NSAIDS: Aleve, Advil, Excedrin IB, Midol IB, Motrin, Ibuprofen, Children’s Advil, Children’s Motrin
  • Ketoprofen Containing Medications: Actron, Orudis KT

Many over the counter cold, flu, or sinus products contain ibuprofen or aspirin. Please check labels or contact your physician’s office if you are unsure of the contents of your medication

Many patients take nutritional supplements and herbal remedies.  Although these products are considered to be natural and may be beneficial for a variety of ailments, their use around the time of surgery may not be desirable. Some of these have known anticoagulant properties and may cause a bleeding complication, therefore, it is advisable to stop taking these products two weeks prior to surgery and two weeks following surgery.

  • Bilberry (vaccinium myrtillus)
  • Cayenne (capsicum annuum)
  • Dong Quai (angelilca sinensis) Echinacea (echinacea augustfolia) Feverfew (tanacetum parthenium)
  • Fish Oil Capsules
  • Garlic Tablets Ginger Tablets Ginkgo Biloba Ginseng
  • Hawthorne (crataegus laevigata)
  • Kava Kava (piper methysticum) Licorice Root
  • Ma Huang (ephedra sinica) Melatonin
  • St. John’s Wort (hypericum perforatum) Valerian (valeriana officinalis)
  • Vitamin E
  • Yohimbe (corynanthe yohimbe)

These should be eaten in moderation as they may cause excessive bleeding:

Almonds, apples, apricots, berries (blackberry, boysenberry, raspberry, and strawberry), cherries, Chinese black beans, cucumbers, currants, grapes, pickles, prunes, tomatoes, wine and alcohol.

Acutane, Advil, Aleve, Accutrim, Actifed, Adapin, Alka Seltzer, Anacin, Ansaid, Anaprox, Argesic, Arthralgen, Arthrits Pain Formula, Arthropan, Ascription, Aspercin, Aspergum, Ativan, Axotal, Bayer Aspirin, BC tab or Powder Bufferin, Capron Capsules, Chlortrimetron, Cama, Compazine, Congesprin, Cope CP-Z, Clinoril, Contact, Coricidin, Coumadin, Darvon, Dimetane, Dimetapp, Dolcin, Dristan, Duradyne, Duradyne Forte, Duragesic, Ecotringen, Emprin, Endep, Etiaron, Excedrin, Feldene, Fiorinal, Flagyl, 4-way Cold Tablets, Goody’s Tablets, Ibuprofen, Indocin, Measurin, Milain, Minocin, Momentum, Motrin, Mysteclin-F, Naprosyn, Nicobid, Nuprin, Oraflex, Pabirin PAC, Pamelor, Parodyne Analgesic, Pepto Bismal, Percodan, Persantine, Persistin, Robaxisal, Ruffen, Ru-Tass, Sal-Payne Capsules, Seldane, S-A-C Tablets, Saieto, Salacol, Sineutab, Sinequan, Sk-65 Compound, Sanback, Stelazine, Stendin, Sine-Off, Sparine, Stanback Tabs/Powder, St. Joseph’s Baby Aspirin, Supac, Surmontil, Syalgos, Talwin, Telanil, Tantab, Tenuate, Tepanil, Thorazine, Tofranil, Tolmetin, Toridol, Trilifon, Tenuate, Dospan, Tetracycline, Tolectin, Trendar, Triaminicin, Trigesic, Ursinus, Uracel, Vanquish, Vibramycin, Vioxx, Warfarin, Zomax, Zorporin          

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