Surgery Walk-through

The month before surgery

  • Eat a healthy diet:
    • Include more plant-based foods in your diet.
    • Make at least half of your grains whole grains.
    • Eat 3 to 4 ounces (25-30 grams) of lean protein 3 times per day.
  • Exercise 30 minutes per day (continuous or broken up into multiple sessions), and do strength training 3 times per week.
  • Prepare your home:
    • If you have stairs in your home, it may be helpful to set up a temporary bedroom and bath on the main floor.
    • Tools like a reacher can help you pick up objects from the floor.

1-5 days before surgery

  • A nurse will call to confirm your surgery date and provide pre-operation instructions.
  • If you have questions, call your surgeon's office.
  • Five days before surgery, start drinking 3 cartons of Impact AR every day between meals, for a total of 15 cartons.

The night before surgery

  • Plan what you will be taking to the hospital. It is best to keep valuables at home if possible.
  • Take a shower using Hibiclens soap.
  • Nothing to eat or drink after midnight. A sip of water with your medications is OK.

The day of surgery

  • Take another shower with Hibiclens soap.
  • Do not eat or drink anything before surgery. A sip of water with your medications is OK.
    • If a doctor has asked you to stop taking certain medications before surgery, don’t take those medications.
  • Plan to arrive at least 2 hours before surgery. Arrive earlier than that if you have a planned nerve block, or if your nurse has told you to.

Arrive at the hospital

At OHSU Marquam Hill:

  • Park in the surgery parking lot, Parking Garage K. Parking is free for patients and visitors.
  • Go to the 9th floor of the main hospital and check in at the information desk in the main lobby.
  • You will be directed to surgery check-in and a waiting room where you will wait until a staff member comes to escort you to the PACU (post-anesthesia care unit).

At OHSU or Hillsboro Medical Center:

  • Your support person will only be able to join you in the PACU if you have developmental delay or are a minor.
  • If you have valuables with you, please leave them with your support person.

In the PACU

  • A nurse will check you in, and any personal items still with you will be secured by staff.
  • You will be asked to use anti-bacterial wipes to clean your body again, and then change into a sterile gown.
  • The anesthesia and surgery teams will each come to prepare you for surgery.
    • An IV may be placed and, if you have a uterus, you may be required to take a pregnancy test.
  • You should urinate just before surgery to reduce the risk of having difficulty urinating after surgery.
  • When it is time for your surgery, the anesthesia team will take you to the operating room.

In the operating room

  • There will be several people in the room to take care of you.
  • The team will help you get comfortable in the operating room when you arrive, and get you ready for your surgery.
  • Your surgery team will perform the procedure.
  • After surgery, the anesthesia team will wake you up and take you back to the PACU.

Who’s in the operating room?

  • Surgeon: This is the doctor performing your surgery. They are the leader of the team taking care of you.
  • Anesthesia team: This team will make you comfortable before and during surgery. They will take you to the operating room and give you medicines to sleep. After the procedure, they will wake you up and take you to the recovery area.
  • Nursing staff: There are several nurses in the OR to help care for you. They will help get you comfortable on the operating table, make sure the OR runs smoothly, and stay in touch with your loved ones if needed during the surgery.
  • Surgical scrub tech: This person makes sure all of the supplies needed for your surgery are ready, and gives instruments to the surgeon as needed.
  • Learners: OHSU is a university hospital, which means that we have resident physicians and medical students on the teams taking care of patients.

Return to the PACU

  • Your support person will be notified that you are in the recovery room.
  • Your nurse will monitor you while you recover from anesthesia and surgery.
  • Your team will treat any pain or nausea you have.
  • Once you meet your post-surgery milestones in the PACU, you will either be discharged home or admitted to the hospital.

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