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Questions to Ask Before Surgery

By Randi Morse 

The idea of going under the knife for surgery can cause a great deal of anxiety, especially if you have never undergone surgery before. The good news is that surgical procedures have become extremely safe. Today's well-trained doctors and high-tech machines makes undergoing surgery the safest it's ever been. It can be hard to know what questions to ask prior to surgery if you have never had one before. This list of questions will help you know what to ask in order to help calm your fears about an upcoming surgery. 

Who is Doing My Surgery? 

Patients often assume that the doctor they initially scheduled surgery with is the one who will be doing the procedure. While this is often true, that is not always what happens. Sometimes your doctor must step away to deal with another emergency and one of their colleagues will replace them. Other times your surgeon may request the help of another doctor, or they may be teaching a resident how to do a procedure. There are also times when your doctor must turn your care over to a specialist. This is why it's a good idea to ask who will be performing the surgery prior to, and on, your surgical date. 

Who Should I Bring With Me? 

If you are going to require any type of sedation for your surgery, you will not be allowed to drive yourself home. Make sure you bring someone with you who you trust to bring you home safely. If your surgery requires that you spend the night at the hospital, you may still want you to bring someone with you for moral support. A friend or family member is usually allowed to stay with you during the pre-operative period. 

What Can I Eat/Drink? 

The general rule when undergoing anesthesia is that you shouldn't eat or drink anything after midnight the day of your surgery. You may be allowed to drink clear liquids, including things like water, sports drinks and juice, until around two or three hours prior to the procedure. All hospitals and anesthesiologists vary, so it's important that you ask this question. 

When Will I Get to Go Home? 

Doctors often do a large quantity of similar types of procedures. Because of this, they should be able to give you a pretty fair idea when you will be able to go home. Keep in mind that sometimes things don't go exactly as planned and you may have to extend your stay longer than you anticipated. 

Don't ever feel hesitant to ask any question, no matter how stupid you think your question may sound. Your surgical team is there not only to help fix your medical issue; they are also there to help keep you comfortable during the entire process. 

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Jacksonville, Fla.

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