Comprehensive, personalized breast & melanoma cancer care

Instructions for your surgery

Preparing for surgery:

  • Fill your pain prescription that should have been given to you in the office.
  • Be sure you have had your preoperative labs, chest x-ray and EKG done (if ordered by your surgeon)
  • Medication check: If you take aspirin or plavix, in most cases this should be stopped 7 days prior to surgery.   Coumadin (warfarin) is usually stopped 5 days prior to surgery.  Be sure you have spoken with a doctor prior to stopping these medications.
  • What to pack: Loose-fitting comfortable clothing to wear home.  The Something Special Shop located behind the gift shop in Martha Jefferson Hospital have any options for clothing following surgery.  If you are going to be spending a night in the hospital, you will want to pack your personal items, including toothbrush and glasses.
  • Stop smoking: Even if it’s just for the weeks leading up to surgery, stopping smoking can help with wound healing and a faster recovery.

Day of surgery:

  • DO NOT EAT OR DRINK ANYTHING after midnight the evening before surgery.  If you have been instructed to take medications, please take them with a sip of water only.
  • Arrive on time to Martha Jefferson Hospital.  Come to the main entrance and take the elevators to the first floor.  Check in at registration.  You will then be directed to the ADMIT/RECOVERY where you will be registered.   You will be greeted by a nurse who will likely start an IV.  You will meet your anesthesiologist and the operating room staff who will care for you during your surgery.  From here you will move on to the operating room for your procedure.
  • The actual time of surgery is an estimate as is the start time you are given.  Thank you for your understanding.
  • Your family and friends will be instructed where they can wait.  They are also welcome to leave a cell phone number with the staff, so they can wait wherever they are most comfortable.
  • If you have general anesthesia you will recover in the anesthesia recovery.  When you are awake and comfortable you will move on to your hospital room.