How to prepare for surgery

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  • Reasons for Hysterectomy
  • Procedure
  • Reasons for Light Diet
  • Foods for Light Diet
  • Risks of Surgery

Hysterectomy is a major surgery in which a woman’s uterus is removed 1. The uterus is the part of the body in which a baby grows. According to MedlinePlus, one in three women undergo hysterectomy by age 60 1. This common surgical procedure is performed to relieve health concerns. Although the surgery carries some risk, recovery is usually uneventful and most complications are preventable.

Reasons for Hysterectomy

Hysterectomy is performed to relieve problems with the female reproductive system 1. Common problems necessitating a hysterectomy include endometriosis, uterine fibroids, uterine prolapse and pelvic pain 1. Heavy vaginal bleeding for unknown causes is also relieved by hysterectomy 1. Although less invasive procedures are usually tried before hysterectomy, surgical removal of the uterus often provides symptom relief 1.


Phase 2 Diet for Gastric Bypass

Hysterectomy is inpatient surgery performed under general anesthesia 1. According to the American College of Surgeons, the surgeon removes the uterus either through an abdominal incision or through the vagina. Surgeons may be more likely to use the abdominal incision method when cancer is suspected because it allows better viewing of the internal organs. Doctors may remove the uterus alone or the uterus and ovaries.

  • Hysterectomy is inpatient surgery performed under general anesthesia 1.
  • According to the American College of Surgeons, the surgeon removes the uterus either through an abdominal incision or through the vagina.

Reasons for Light Diet

Surgeons recommend that patients consume a light diet the day before surgery. In addition, patients are often advised to only consume clear liquids after midnight the night before the surgery. These requirements are in place to prevent the risk of vomit aspiration and so that the body is not trying to do the hard work of digestion while also recovering from surgery.

Foods for Light Diet

Salpingectomy Side Effects

Prepare foods with as little fat as possible. The morning of the surgery, items you can consume on a clear-liquid diet include:

  • beef or chicken broth; apple
  • cranberry or grape juice
  • gelatin,
  • sports drinks

Risks of Surgery

Like any surgery, hysterectomy carries risks 1. According to the American College of Surgeons, some women are at higher risk of complications from surgery. Some predisposing factors that make complications more likely include obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and other chronic health conditions. Smoking also increases the risk of complications from surgery.

How to prepare for surgery

Surgery heals and saves lives, but it is not without risks. Something as basic as your diet prior to surgery can affect the outcome. Your doctor and anesthesiologist will provide you with a preoperative food guide, which you'll want to follow to avoid complications such as aspirating stomach contents into your lungs. If you deviate from the prescribed eating plan in the 12 hours prior to surgery, let your doctor and anesthesiologist know.

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Two to Three Days Prior to Surgery

Eat a regular balanced diet with lean proteins such as chicken or fish, low-fat dairy, whole grains and fruits and vegetables. Focus on getting all your nutritional needs met through food, as your doctor will likely recommend you stop taking vitamins a week prior to surgery to prevent risk of bleeding.

Make sure you're getting enough B vitamins, which help your body's immunity. Lean meats, dairy, green vegetables and whole grains provide B vitamins. For example, have a vegetable omelet, whole grain toast and low-fat milk for breakfast, turkey or tuna sandwich, going light on the mayo, with fruit and low-fat milk for lunch, and fish, whole grain rice and a leafy green salad for dinner.

Day Before Surgery

The day prior to surgery your doctor will ask you avoid whole grains and fiber from legumes and fruits and vegetables, and to limit dairy to two servings, according to the Hospital for Special Surgery.

You can have enriched grains such as white bread and rice, as these foods move through the digestive tract quicker than their whole grain counterparts. A sample diet the day before surgery includes a bowl of cereal and orange juice for breakfast, chicken noodle soup with a white dinner roll for lunch, and chicken with mashed potatoes for dinner.

Day of Surgery

The American Society of Anesthesiologists provides preoperative diet guidelines to ensure a safe surgery and reduce postoperative nausea. It advises that you shouldn't eat any solid food or dairy after midnight prior to your surgery. You can have clear liquids up to two hours before surgery. Approved liquids are water, coffee or tea without milk, fruit juices without pulp, soft drinks and sports drinks.

Avoid Junk Foods

Avoid foods that don't have nutritional value in the days leading up to surgery. This includes cookies, candies, chips and other junk foods.

Unless approved by your doctor, discontinue taking a vitamin a week before surgery. Discuss any medications you're taking with your doctor to find out how long you should continue to take them. Some medicines you can take as prescribed, whereas others you'll need to discontinue just prior to surgery.

Post Surgery Diet

Diet recommendations after surgery will vary significantly depending on the type of surgery you had. However, you will likely not have a normal appetite right away. You might even experience nausea after anesthesia.

According to UCLA Health, your diet is limited to ice chips and clear liquids for the first few hours after surgery to help decrease nausea and prevent vomiting. After the initial recovery period, be sure to drink plenty of fluids. Include protein in your diet to help your body heal, as well as high-fiber foods to combat constipation, frequently caused by pain medication.

If you’re planning to have surgery, you’ll want to spend some time preparing. That means taking care of your health, learning as much as you can about the procedure and getting to know the people who will be taking care of you. Planning ahead can help ensure you have a successful procedure and heal faster with a smooth recovery.

Planning ahead can help ensure you have a successful procedure and heal faster with a smooth recovery.

What should you do to prepare for surgery?

There are several steps you should take before your surgery so you’ll feel as relaxed and confident as possible. Start with answering these questions:

  • Are your physicians qualified? Ask your physicians about their experience performing the specific procedure you are having to make sure they are qualified with the appropriate medical education and training.
  • Is the facility licensed and accredited, and are emergency procedures in place? If you are having surgery outside of a hospital — at an outpatient facility or your doctor’s office — be sure it’s licensed (check with your state’s health department) and appropriately accredited by an organization such as The Joint Commission, the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC), or the American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities (AAAASF). Also make sure the facility has medications, equipment, and procedures in place to handle emergencies, especially if there is no emergency facility nearby.
  • Who will provide the anesthesia? Be sure your anesthesia care is led by a physician anesthesiologist. A physician anesthesiologist is a medical doctor who specializes in anesthesia, pain management, and critical care medicine, and works with your surgeon and other physicians to develop and administer your anesthesia care plan. With 12 to 14 years of education and 12,000 to 16,000 hours of clinical training, these highly trained medical experts play a key role in your care. They meet with you before surgery, closely monitor your anesthesia and vital functions during the procedure, and take care of you after to assure your recovery is smooth and your pain is controlled.
  • Am I as healthy as I can be? Spend the time before the procedure being as active as you can, eating right and getting good sleep. If you smoke, stop as soon as possible — even if it’s just a day or two before surgery — because smoking can cause problems with breathing and recovery from anesthesia and surgery. Other steps you take will be guided by your meetings with the medical team, including the physician anesthesiologist.
  • How do I avoid surprise medical bills? While your health and safety are your priorities, it’s also important to make sure your insurance coverage is in order before surgery so you don’t receive any unexpected bills. “Surprise medical bills” are caused by “surprise insurance gaps” that occur when your insurance plan offers a low premium but limits the number of physicians in the plan’s network. Before having a medical procedure, ask who will be involved in your care and whether they’re in your plan’s network. Call your insurance company to verify that the hospital or medical center and each physician and provider caring for you are in-network.

How to prepare for surgery

Preparing for Surgery: An Anesthesia Checklist

Download and print this checklist with the steps you can take to help ensure a successful surgery.

Surgeries are usually considered when the medical treatment fails, or when the surgical route is the only available option. Whereas some people need to be rushed to the operation theatre, but a large number of people undergo scheduled Before Surgery.

Preparing for Surgery

It is natural to feel apprehensive about the upcoming surgery. There are always risks involved as with any treatment.

However, you can take steps to ease the process, and make your prognosis better. Planning well before Surgeries can also help with the recovery as well.

Weeks Before Surgery?

Ask your doctor

You might feel hesitant to ask your doctor, perceiving the questions to be a source of nagging. However, it is suggested that you get answers for all the queries from your General Surgeon in Lahore; from the banal questions to the more specific ones, ask them away.

Also, you should talk to the anthologist as well, as they play just as a crucial role in your surgery as the surgeon does. Before the surgery, you should know the time for surgery, the post-op time, complete healing time etc. so that you can manage your affairs accordingly.

Eat better

Eating a Healthy diet is always good for your health, but it is especially important before you go into surgery. Be sure to take plenty of fruits and vegetables days before the surgery, as they are packed with essential vitamins and minerals. These help in the healing and recovery after the operation as well.

Moreover, certain foods like processed meals, red meat, sugar, also pose the danger of inflammation in the body. Inflammation just before surgery is not optimal for health.

Also, as fruits and vegetables also lower inflammation in the body, their benefit is two pronged.


If you already are not exercising regularly, you should at least start some time before your Surgeries. Exercise helps patients in the post-op period. Those who remain active have an easier time walking after the surgery as well.

However, you do not have to camp at the gym to reap benefits of exercise. Something as simple as walking is beneficial. Try to remain less sedentary, and creep in activity with everything; take the stairs instead of the elevator, park farther than you normal would so you can walk the distance etc.

This way, exercise will not feel like a chore to you, and your body will thank you after surgery.

No smoking or drinking

Ideally, you should not be partaking in smoking and drinking anyways, since the impact of these habits on your wellbeing is rather grave.

However, you should especially refrain from these habits before surgery. These substances have a dire impact on the health, therefore, impede in recovery. Since, the body is already vulnerable after Surgeries, these harmful habits exacerbate the condition.

Moreover, smoking and drinking also affect sleep and anxiety levels in the body. This in turn, affect the anesthesia. Smoking also impairs breathing, and thus impedes the recovery from the surgery.

Therefore, abandon these habits before surgery.

Talk to your General Physician

Your primary physician needs to know that you are undergoing surgery in the near future. The doctor can then adjust the medications accordingly. Your GP might also help you monitor and control your blood pressure and blood sugar levels, that can make your recovery better.

Prescription Checkup

You should clear with your doctor about the medicines that you are taking, and whether they can interfere with the surgery. For example, some patients take blood thinners, but that can increase the risk of bleeding during surgery.

Likewise, some vitamins and supplements can also interfere with the drugs that you may have to take for Surgeries. Thus, get clearance from your doctor with regards to your prescription.

What should I do Before Surgery?

Just before the surgery, some precise steps need to be carried out.

No food

In few hours before surgery, patients who are getting general anesthesia should not eat or drink anything. Some patients may also be administered enema, a laxative, so that the bowels are empty during surgery.

Dressing Properly

Your attire for hospital stay for Surgeries should be loose and comfortable. This will make it easier for you to shift into your clothes easily after surgery. Tight clothing will also make contact with the incision and can also pain.

Accessories and makeup

You might feel better after putting on makeup, but when you go the hospital for surgery, its best that you do not use it. Moreover, take off your nail polish as well; nails changing color has implications for your health, and nail polish might interfere with this important indicator then.

Also, leave your jewelry and accessories at home, lest they be lost. Especially take off the rings, as your body can swell after or during the procedure, and the ring can thus get stuck. Rather than having it cut off of your fingers, leave it at a safe place in your home.

Inform the staff

If you have any prosthetic or other metal devices like pacemaker, inform the medical staff about it. They should also be aware of any specific ailments, so that they are aware of your medical history in its entirety.

In case you have had an allergic reaction to anesthesia before, it is imperative that you inform your General Surgeon in Karachi, as the course of the surgery will be decided accordingly then. Surgery can be daunting but following on the expert advice and council from your doctor can help streamline the process.

How to prepare for surgery

If you are planning for an upcoming scheduled surgery, you might not realize that there are things you can do in the days or weeks before to increase your chances of a successful outcome.

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Don’t simply wait for the scheduled date. Take these actions to be as healthy and strong as you can be, says general surgeon Diya Alaedeen, MD. He offers these tips to help prepare.

Eat a cleaner diet

In the days before your surgery, eat foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals. “I use the term, ‘cleaner diet,’ focused heavily on fruits and vegetables,” Dr. Alaedeen says. “We know that overall inflammation goes down when you eat foods from these food groups.”

Also, avoid processed foods, red meat and other foods which are more difficult to break down. ”As your body prepares for a shock that’s coming up, avoiding those things will decrease inflammatory markers,” he says.

Exercise regularly

Among other benefits, getting more exercise in the weeks before a surgery will increase your chances of walking sooner after the surgery.

“Even if you’re not an athlete, patients can train their bodies during the weeks leading up to surgery,” says Dr. Alaedeen. Even something as simple as parking farther away from the door where you work or shop can help.

“Shoot for 5,000 to 10,000 steps a day to increase your stamina. The main thing is that, undoubtedly, one of the discharge criteria you’re going to have to meet before you go home is getting close to your preoperative level of activity,” he says.

Kick bad habits

Use the time before surgery to quit smoking, stop drinking or using “any mood-altering substances that can affect your sleep or anxiety levels leading up to surgery,” Dr. Alaedeen says.

“Certainly in the few days leading up to surgery, alcohol and smoking can really affect the anesthesia.”

On the positive side, patients absolutely should engage in “meditation, prayer and things that are important to help them through the trauma that they’re about to undergo,” Dr. Alaedeen says.

See your internist

If you have two weeks or more before surgery, it’s especially important to check in and let your doctor know what’s coming up.

“Your primary care physician might want to make changes in your medications to optimize surgery,” Dr. Alaedeen says. “Your blood pressure and blood sugar need to be well-controlled. From a wound-healing standpoint, the better the sugars are controlled, especially for diabetics, the better recovery you’re going to have.”

Find out about supplements, vitamins

Be sure to ask your doctor about vitamins and supplements, because some of them can interact with other medications, particularly anticoagulants.

Medications that impact bleeding, such as aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs (like Advil®), Plavix® and Coumadin® probably should be stopped, Dr. Alaedeen says.

“But these questions are addressed in the pre-op medical clearance appointment,” he says. “It really is the provider’s role to counsel patients on medication/supplement usage as this varies from patient-to-patient.”

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How to prepare for surgery

Preparing for your surgery can help you heal faster and reduce your risk of complications, and it’s important to know that preparation comes in two forms: physical and mental.

Cora Kite, a clinical nursing supervisor at MU Health Care, offers these tips to help you get ready for surgery and increase your chance of better outcomes.

Inform yourself. Meet your medical team, and ask questions about your procedure. Discuss any risks and possible complications that might arise. Bring a notebook and pen to write down important information and instructions.

Prepare physically. Eating a balanced diet and exercising — even taking short walks — can have a big impact on the outcome of your surgery. If you smoke, try to quit. Also, avoid excessive alcohol intake, and drink plenty of water.

Prepare emotionally. Going through surgery isn’t always easy. To help reduce stress, anxiety and pain, consider relaxation exercises such as mindful breathing, meditation or listening to music. If you are struggling, talk to someone. Your medical team is there to treat more than the physical aspect of surgery.

Learn about anesthesia. Anesthesia comes in many forms — each with its own risks and after effects. Talk to your anesthesiologist to find out what type of anesthesia you will have and how it might affect you.

Manage your medicine. Many surgeries require you to stop taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) such as aspirin and ibuprofen. Before surgery, be sure your doctor knows exactly what medications and supplements you are taking, and ask if you need to make any changes.

Prepare your home. Whether it’s stocking up on groceries or rearranging furniture so you can move around more easily, think about what you’ll need when you return from the hospital. Remove as much clutter from the floor as possible to reduce your risk of falling.

Pack your bag. Hospital stays can become long and boring. After you’ve packed the basics, remember to bring some entertainment, such as your tablet, computer, a book
or games.

Identify your support system. Family and friends are great sources of support during your recovery. They can help by providing meals, taking you to doctors’ appointments and being there for emotional support. Plan ahead to anticipate what kind of help you’ll need and when. And always be sure to let your caregivers know how much you appreciate them.

How to prepare for surgery

Undergoing surgery is not an experience that everyone will endure in their lifetime. However, as you age the possibility that you will need surgery is likely to increase. This is due to the increased risk of developing health problems as you get older.

If you are currently in a situation where you know you are going to have surgery soon, then it is important to prepare yourself.

Why Prepare Yourself for Surgery?

Preparing yourself for your surgery can help you to have a more positive attitude towards the procedure and this is especially important if it is serious surgery. Preparing yourself could also help to speed up your recovery process and help you to feel better sooner.

The type of surgery that you are having will influence the various ways in which you should prepare. For example, there are multiple steps that you will need to take before cataract surgery that would not be relevant to a bone fracture repair surgery.

Three important considerations as you prepare yourself for surgery are:

  • Be kind to your body
  • Learn about your procedure
  • Plan for your recovery

Read on to learn how you can easily do all three!

Be Kind to Your Body

The two best ways you can be kind to your body before surgery are by eating well and exercising often.

Your body needs adequate amounts of certain nutrients to thrive and this is all the more important before surgery. Make sure you include enough protein in your diet in the weeks leading up to your operation, as well as a wide range of different fruits and vegetables.

Depending on your surgery, it is likely you will have to spend a period of time in bed afterward. This might be for a few days or for several weeks. Ensuring you keep your activity levels up before the procedure can help your body to better cope with this period of inactivity.

Learn About Your Procedure

Being completely in the know about your particular procedure can help to put your mind at ease. It is natural to have feelings of anxiety about having surgery. When you understand more about what is actually going to happen, you might find that these anxious feelings are relieved.

Furthermore, this research process is a good way to occupy your mind in the time before your operation. You can either ask your surgeon for more details or you can do your own research online.

Plan for Your Recovery

If you do not have a good plan for how you will spend your recovery time, then this can add to your stress about the surgery itself.

Having a recovery plan is an essential part of preparing for your surgery. Consider how you are going to get home after the procedure, who is going to care for you during this period, and what supplies you might need in the home.

Your individual recovery plan will of course depend on your unique needs after the operation, so be sure you know what these needs are going to be!

If you’re scheduled for rotator cuff surgery, you might think there’s nothing to do but wait—but actually, now is a great time to make preparations that will help your recovery.

A rotator cuff is a collection of four muscles and their tendons that form a cuff around the shoulder joint to help lift and rotate the arm. The muscles also help stabilize the ball of the shoulder joint in the socket of the shoulder blade, especially when the arm is raised overhead.

People can injure their rotator cuffs in many ways, but most injuries affect the tendons that attach the four rotator cuff muscles to the arm and shoulder bones. Tears may cause pain, weakness or a lack of function.

Frequently, injuries to the rotator cuff tendons do not require surgery and can be treated with physical therapy, steroid injections, anti-inflammatory medication and activity modifications that help reduce pain.

“I’ve had a partial rotator cuff tear since I was in college,” says R. Alexander Creighton, MD, chief of orthopedic sports medicine for UNC Orthopaedics. “It’s been stable for 30 years, and I’ve never needed surgery.”

However, some rotator cuff injuries do require surgery to repair. Usually, these injuries are caused either by a traumatic event such as dislocating a shoulder or by degeneration, a natural aging process that thins and weakens the rotator cuff tendons. Injuries from degeneration are more common and increase in frequency with age.

Rotator cuff surgery is usually done with arthroscopic techniques. A small fiber-optic tube (arthroscope) fitted with a camera and a light is guided into the shoulder joint through a small incision. Surgeons can evaluate the full joint and look at what needs to be repaired. Then instruments are inserted into the incision to repair, reconstruct or remove damaged tissue.

Almost all patients go home the same day as the surgery. Full recovery can take up to a year, although 80 percent of the progress is made within the first six months after surgery.

Ask Yourself These Questions Before Rotator Cuff Surgery

“Before your surgery, it’s good to think ahead to what you will need after surgery,” Dr. Creighton says. “Get a support system in place so that the days following surgery go as smoothly as possible.”

Here are the things you should be thinking about in the weeks leading up to your rotator cuff surgery:

1. Who will take me home after surgery?

Rotator cuff surgery is performed under general or regional anesthesia, or a combination of the two, and most people don’t need to spend the night in the hospital. That means you’ll need help getting home and taking care of yourself while the medication wears off. Make arrangements for someone to drive you home and take care of you immediately after your surgery.

2. Who will help me in the weeks after surgery?

“Logistically, you will only be able to use one arm for a while,” Dr. Creighton says. “Because the shoulder that we operated on will need time to heal, you’ll need to restrict and protect shoulder movements, which means you’ll need help with some common tasks.”

You might need help preparing food, dressing yourself or caring for children or pets. If you have friends or family members who can help you, or if you plan to hire help, make those arrangements in advance and set expectations for loved ones about what you’ll need. Talk to a social worker at your hospital if you need help finding or paying for assistance.

3. Am I practicing my “T. rex” arm?

Dr. Creighton says it’s good to use a “T. rex arm” for several weeks after surgery. This means keeping your upper arm close to your side, without rotating your shoulder or fully extending the arm to the front, side or back. He says it’s good to start doing this a couple of weeks before the surgery to make sure you don’t overuse your shoulder before the procedure.

4. Which physical therapist will I use for rehabilitation?

It’s important to establish a relationship with a physical therapist before your first rehabilitation appointment. Select a therapist before your surgery and do a pre-surgery visit with him or her, if you can.

“Postoperative therapy is such a key component of recovery, and it’s helpful to not be meeting your physical therapist for the first time at your first post-op visit,” Dr. Creighton says.

5. How will I sleep?

Many people with rotator cuff injuries have a difficult time finding a comfortable sleeping position. Surgery can make that even more challenging. Think about how you might sleep after your surgery, and spend a few nights beforehand getting used to it. You might try sleeping on the uninjured shoulder or in a recliner.

6. Do I understand what will happen during and after surgery?

Don’t be afraid to ask your doctor all the questions you have about your surgery and recovery process.

“Education is really important. We strive to help patients understand everything that will happen during and after surgery,” Dr. Creighton says.

It also can help to talk to people who have had a similar experience. They might have advice, and you can see what a successful surgery looks like months or years later.

7. Do I have the right mindset for recovery?

“Rotator cuff surgery is a delayed-gratification type of surgery,” Dr. Creighton says. “Have the mindset going into it that this will not be a quick fix. The goal of the surgery is to improve pain and function, but it doesn’t happen right away.”

It takes most people up to a year to fully recover from rotator cuff surgery. There’s a healing phase, a stretching and range-of-motion testing phase, then a strength-gaining phase. Mentally preparing yourself for the long road after surgery is just as important as any other preparation you can make.

If you’d like to learn more about rotator cuff surgery or see if it’s a good option for you, make an appointment with UNC Orthopaedics.