Preparing for Surgery

Preparing for surgery, whether for an adult or child, can be a very stressful time. The staff at Heart of Florida Surgery Center are focused on your safety and care.

Pre-Registration

Once your surgery has been scheduled:

One of our Registered Nurses will contact you to review your past and present medical and surgical history. The nurse will also ask about all of the medications that you take on a daily basis including over the counter medications and herbal supplements. It is especially important to know your blood pressure, diabetic, and heart medications. The nurse will then review instructions about taking medications prior to your procedure and other important information you may need to know for your surgery. 

Depending on your age and medical history, you may need to have a few minor tests prior to your surgery to further assure the safest of outcomes for you. You will receive instructions for any tests from either the nurse or your surgeon’s office. The results from these tests will automatically be forwarded to your surgeon and our surgery center.

*Prior to the day of surgery, if there are any changes in your physical condition, please notify your surgeon’s office. The doctor may choose to postpone your surgery.

If you are having any anesthesia or sedation, you must have someone accompany you and stay at the surgery center, drive you home after your surgery, and stay with you overnight.

The Day Before Surgery

A member of our staff will call you with your procedure and arrival times. Because preparing for surgery is very important, to assure your safety and the best possible experience, we have listed some important rules for you to follow. Ignoring these may cause your surgery to be delayed or cancelled.

If You Are Having Anesthesia/Sedation:

  • Do not eat or drink anything after 12:00 midnight the night before surgery (this includes: chewing gum, lozenges, hard candy and chewing tobacco) unless otherwise instructed.

  • Do not bring valuables with you on the day of surgery (this includes: purses, money, jewelry, etc.).

  • If possible, make arrangements for child care which will allow you to concentrate on recovering.

  • If receiving anesthesia or sedation, please have a responsible adult to drive you home.

  • You will be asked to arrive at least 1 hour prior to the time of your surgery; however, this may be up to 2 hours, depending on the type of anesthesia you are receiving. A nurse from Heart of Florida Surgery Center will call you with your arrival time.

  • If you are diabetic, you will be given instructions as to the dose and time to take your medication prior to arriving at the center.

  • If you routinely take a medication that thins the blood, you must speak with your surgeon about when to stop this drug and if you may need any blood tests before surgery (i.e. aspirin, Coumadin, Plavix, Naprosyn, Motrin, Predaxa).

  • If you are delayed in arriving, please call the surgery center as soon as possible at (863) 866-9950.

The Day of Surgery

On the day of surgery, we ask that you:

  • Bring your reading glasses if needed, you will have forms to complete and sign.

  • Bring a list of all current medications (including vitamins and herbals), the dosage and how often you take them.

  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing and simple shoes to make getting dressed after your surgery easy. Do not wear any jewelry of any kind.

  • Bring your insurance cards and driver’s license for the admitting process.

  • Escorts are asked to remain in the building while the patient is in surgery. If you must step out, please tell the receptionist.

You will be asked to remove dentures and glasses/contacts when getting ready for surgery, so please bring your cases with you.

Your anesthesiologist, surgeon, and operating room nurse will visit you in pre-op. They will re-verify information and answer any questions you may have. You will be in pre-op for about an hour. After your surgery, you will be taken directly to the recovery room where you will again be monitored by nurses.

The Recovery Room

Your escort will be allowed in the Recovery Room with you when it is appropriate. For the privacy of you and other patients, limited visitors are allowed in the recovery area. You will be offered crackers and a light beverage. The length of time you will be in the Recovery Room is dependent on the type of procedure and anesthesia you had, your pain level, and your ability to tolerate fluids.

Once you are awake and alert, the nurse will review with you and your care-giver the instructions written by your physician which you are to follow at home. You will be given a copy of your discharge instructions to take home with you.

Please note: Everyone reacts to surgery differently. In some cases, the patient may need to be admitted to the hospital following the surgery for specific medical reasons. If the need arises, be assured that this decision will be made in conjunction with anesthesia personnel and your surgeon. You will be admitted to the Heart of Florida Regional Medical Center

When You Go Home

Please follow these instructions when you get home if you have had anesthesia/sedation:

  • You must have your care-giver stay with you for the first 24 hours. You may be drowsy or dizzy and unsteady on your feet.

  • Rest and relax. You have just had surgery. Follow your doctor’s recommendations for resuming your normal activities.

  • Eat a light meal when you get hungry. Eating too much, or heavy foods, may cause you to become nauseated.

  • Remember to follow your doctor’s instructions on resuming any previous medications you had been on, as well as taking any pain medication prescribed for you.

  • Do NOT drive, drink alcoholic beverages or operate heavy machinery or power tools for at least 24 hours after your surgery.

  • If you feel you are experiencing any problems after your discharge, call your doctor’s office immediately. If your doctor is not available call the Emergency Room at your local hospital or 9-1-1 if it is an extreme emergency.

After your surgery, you will receive a phone call from a member of our nursing staff to check on your progress.

If Your Child is Having Surgery

Heart of Florida Surgery Center is a child friendly facility. Our surgeons perform several different types of children’s surgeries each year. Our nursing staff has had many years of experience in caring for children and understand the impact surgery has on them.

To make their day, and yours, a little less stressful, we recommend the following:

  • If possible, arrangements should be made for the care of siblings. The child having surgery will need your full attention.

  • Encourage your child to bring a favorite toy or blanket.

  • If your child uses diapers, a pacifier, a bottle, or a “sippy” cup, please bring them along.

  • Parent/legally designated care-giver will be asked to wear an identifying bracelet with the same information contained on the child’s bracelet. You may remove these once you are discharged from the facility.

  • Parent/legally designated care-giver shall remain in the pre-op area with the child until the time of surgery.

  • Parent/legally designated care-giver shall remain in the pre-op area with the child until the time of surgery.

  • Parent/legally designated care-giver shall NOT leave the facility while child is having surgery.

  • Parent/legally designated care-giver may be with the child during the recovery process as soon as Anesthesia/Recovery Room nurse determines it is appropriate.

  • Children over the age of 2 years may have nothing to eat or drink after midnight, unless otherwise instructed.