Getting Ready for Surgery

Get Healthy!

The best way of preparing for surgery is to follow a healthy lifestyle. A balanced diet and plenty of rest can help you prepare your body for surgery. Stopping use of all tobacco and limiting alcohol intake will help your body heal faster after surgery. Honeopathic preparations Arnica Montana and Bromelian, if used, work best in limiting bruising and swelling if started at least 2 weeks before surgery.

The Admission Process

Prior to the day of surgery, the hospital will contact you with the specific arrival time on the day of surgery.

On the day of surgery, you will proceed to the main admitting area of the facility.

After verifying your address, home phone number and signing a general consent for treatment, you will proceed to the ambulatory surgery admitting area. Here you will be interviewed and examined by an anesthesiologist, and may receive a pre-sedative.

Pre-operative Process

The next stop is the holding area of the operating suite. An intravenous line will be started and a saline solution "drip" will be started.

If you did not receive a pre-sedative in the ambulatory surgery admitting area, one will be given intravenously.

Relax! The hardest part of your day (the I.V.) is behind you!

The Operating Room

Most facial plastic surgery procedures can be performed under sedation or under general anesthesia. The type of anesthesia you receive will depend upon the type and length of your surgery and your general medical condition. Dr. Sclafani can give you an idea of how long your procedure will take. Based on these factors, you, Dr. Sclafani and the anesthesiologist will decide on the best type of anesthesia for you.

You will then be bought into the operating room. The array of monitors may at first seem overwhelming, but realize these will help make your surgery as safe as possible. Typically, there will be several people in the room, including the surgeon, the anesthesiologist and 2-3 nurses.

Once all is prepared, the anesthesiologist will first administer oxygen, followed by the other medications. You will be asked to take several deep breaths, and you will fall asleep. Generally, the next thing you will be aware of is that the surgery is over. (Frequently, as the patient is being taken out of the operating room, he/she will ask "When is the operation going to start?"!)

Waking Up

You will stay in the operating facility generally until you are full awake, able to take liquids and you are able to walk with assistance.

Initially, you will be monitored in the surgical recovery room. You may then be transferred back to the ambulatory surgery holding area, which is generally more comfortable and your friends and family can be with you.

If you plan to stay overnight, you will be brought to your room rather than the ambulatory holding area.

Length of Hospital Stay

Everyone reacts differently to anesthetics, and some people react differently to anesthetics than they had in the past.

Generally, you will be asked to be at the facility 1-2 hours prior to your scheduled procedure, and it takes most patients between 1 and 3 hours to fully wake up after surgery.

Adding to this time the length of surgery will give you a good sense of how long you will be in the hospital.

The Night of Surgery

Patients are generally given prescriptions for preventative antibiotics as well as pain medications.

Believe it or not, most patients will describe the worst of their experience as "discomfort", not "pain". Aftercare is generally limited.

However, patients with concerns may opt to stay overnight in the facility or arrange for a private nurse. If you think you may be interested, please let our staff know.