Pre-Operative Instructions

Pre-Operative Instructions in General

Pre-Operative Instructions For Carotid Endarterectomy
Prior to all general surgical or gastrointestinal operations, there is always
some preparation involved. First, most patients who undergo an operation
requiring a general anesthetic, a spinal anesthetic or a procedure where heavy
sedation will be used, need to refrain from eating or drinking anything after
midnight on the evening prior to their procedure (unless otherwise instructed
by their surgeon). You may be instructed by the surgeon or the anesthesiologist
to take certain medications with a sip of water on the morning of surgery.
However, some medications should be withheld starting as long as three to
seven days prior (e.g. blood thinners such as Coumadin, or aspirin-containing
products). It is helpful to bring a list of your medications, including the specific
dosages, to your office appointment and to your preadmission testing
appointment so that these can be reviewed with the surgeon and the
anesthesiologist. You will then be instructed on which medicines you may take.

Prior to many surgical procedures, there are certain bowel preparations that
must be taken. The simplest preparation that can be taken is to have clear
liquids only on the day prior to the procedure. Other operations, such as colon
and rectal surgery, require that the small and large intestine be completely
cleared out of any contents. Be sure to ask your surgeon for the specific
preparation you will need on the day (or days) prior to your surgery.

Certain medical issues require preoperative consultation prior to surgery. In
particular, if you have a history of coronary artery disease, lung problems,
dental problems, nerve or muscle weakness, or if you have had a problem
with anesthesia in the past, you should notify your surgeon on the day of your
initial consultation. Oftentimes, we try to facilitate a consultation with a medical
specialist, such as a cardiologist, prior to your preadmission testing appointment
so that any medical issues can be addressed in advance.