To help prepare you for your surgery a nurse will attempt to contact you a day or two before your surgery date. If you have not received a call by 1:00 p.m. the day before your surgery, please call us at (208) 625-6444.
Pre-Op Lab Tests & EKG
If your doctor orders lab tests or an EKG, they should be completed at least three working days before your scheduled surgery.
- Please bathe/shower with soap and brush your teeth the morning of surgery. If your surgeon’s office has given you a “special” soap or body wash to utilize, please follow the instructions that were given to you on how and when to use it. Be aware that we follow the latest recommendations on infection prevention and may be asking you to perform an “all over” body wipe with antibacterial wipes prior to your surgery.
- Prepare a list of allergies or sensitivities you may have to medications, latex, iodine, tape, food, etc., and bring it with you on the day of surgery.
- Prepare a list of medications (along with dosages), including over-the-counter drugs such as aspirin. Include on your list any vitamins or herbal remedies you are taking. Bring it with you on the day of surgery.
- Do not smoke for 24 hours before your surgery. Smoking affects your circulatory system and can cause serious breathing problems when undergoing surgery.
- Nothing to eat or drink after 10:00 p.m. unless directed otherwise by Kootenai Outpatient Surgery staff. This includes gum, breath mints, candy, and chewing tobacco.
- If you take medication, please check with your doctor to see if you should change your medication schedule.
- Make arrangements for a responsible adult (age 18 or older) to drive you home following your surgery. If you travel by taxi or Kootenai Health’s Transportation Service, you must have a responsible adult accompany you such as a friend or family member.
- Make arrangements for someone to stay with you for 24 hours after your surgery.
The Day of Surgery
- Bring picture identification and insurance cards when you check-in.
- Arrive an hour and a half before your scheduled surgery time (unless otherwise instructed).
- Wear comfortable, casual, and loose fitting clothes which can be folded for storage. You will be given a gown and slipper socks to wear for surgery.
- Remove all makeup and fingernail polish. Makeup can cause irritation to your eyes and mask important changes in your skin color as you undergo surgery. Nail polish is removed so that circulation may be checked during your procedure.
- Leave all jewelry, money, credit cards or other valuables at home. We are unable to guarantee their safekeeping.
- Leave contact lenses at home, if possible. Wear your glasses so you may sign admission paperwork and your consent form for surgery. Bring an eyeglass case for your glasses.
- Body piercings must be removed before surgery. If you are unable to remove piercings on your own, we suggest you visit a reputable piercing salon that can assist you with removal.
- Due to space limitations in our waiting room, please have no more than two people accompany you on the day of surgery.
- You may have visited with your surgeon and received some information about the anesthesia you will receive for your surgery. An anesthesia provider will visit with you the day of your surgery. This visit will allow you to ask questions about anesthesia and it is a chance to participate in the decision as to what type of anesthesia is the best choice for you and your surgeon. There will be an anesthesia consent form that the providers will review with you and have you sign. These providers will evaluate any health issues that may affect anesthesia delivery and will talk with you about helping to prevent conditions like post-operative nausea and vomiting. If you have questions or concerns prior to your surgery date about your anesthetic plan, please feel free to call the pre-operative phone line to speak with any registered nurse at (208) 625-6444.
Children Having Surgery
- Bathe your child the night before surgery.
- Your child is welcome to bring a favorite toy or blanket from home.
- Please bring supplies for your child, i.e. bottle, formula, sippy cup, pacifier, diapers, wipes, etc. We do not keep these supplies on hand.
- Due to space limitations, only the child’s parents/legal guardians are allowed to stay with the child in the pre-op area before surgery.
- Your child may be given a very powerful, fast acting sedative prior to his/her procedure. This is given to relax your child, and to ease their fear and anxiety. This medication may cause sleepiness, dizziness, and uncoordination. Watch your child closely. Have small children sit in your lap. Encourage older children to sit or lie quietly.
- For patients under 18 years old, a parent or legal guardian must remain in the waiting area for the full course of the child’s stay.
- If you are a legal guardian, please bring guardianship papers. Proof of guardianship is required for you to sign the consent for surgery.
- After surgery, parents will be reunited with their child as soon as the child is awake, and will be encouraged to participate in their child’s care.
- Please do not bring other children with you to the surgery center. Your child having surgery will require your full attention and may interfere with your ability to participate in the Parent Present Program.
- For small children, it is strongly recommended that someone other than the driver be available to help care for the child during the trip home.
Important Reminders for Parents
- Remember your role as a parent. Your emotions and behavior can have an impact on your child’s outcome, so take your role as the parent very seriously.
- Control your emotions and your behavior. You may be very upset and anxious, but it is important that you display a calm, soothing, trusting manner.
- Try to avoid crying in front of your child.
- Be honest. It is wrong to tell your child “it won’t hurt” or that he/she is going to a birthday party when they are really going to the hospital.
- Your doctor will give you specific written instructions about your activities, medications, diet and follow-up visits after surgery. You will receive a copy of those instructions.
- Your comfort level is important to us. We may not be able to take away all of your discomfort after surgery. However, we will go over some ways to help you communicate any discomfort you may experience and teach you measures to help decrease that discomfort. It is our goal to keep you comfortable enough to rest and to be an active part of your recovery.
- One of our nurses will call you the day after your surgery to see how you are progressing. If your surgery is on Friday, we will call you the following Monday.
- If you have any medical complications or problems after surgery, contact your physician. If you cannot contact your doctor but feel your concerns warrant a doctor’s attention, call or go to the nearest emergency department.
- If you receive a questionnaire in the mail about the care you received at our surgery center, please complete and return it in the postage-paid envelope provided. We appreciate your feedback and we use your input to constantly improve the care we deliver to our community!