skip top site navigation

Preparing for Orthopedic Surgery

skip sidebar

At Woodland Surgery Center and Hand to Shoulder Center of Wisconsin, we understand that preparing for surgery may cause you some concern or anxiety. Our goal is to make your experience a positive one and to provide you with the best care possible.

The following are important reminders as you prepare for orthopedic surgery. Failure to follow the instructions below may cause your surgery to be rescheduled.

Before Orthopedic Surgery

  • A Pre-Surgical History and Physical Examination (H&P) may be requested to be performed by your primary doctor. The H&P must be done within 30 days of surgery or as recommended by your surgeon’s nurse.
  • Verify your insurance carrier has approved your surgery. If you are not sure, call your insurance company or check with your surgeon’s office.
  • Do not eat or drink anything (this includes water, chewing gum, chewing tobacco, and hard candy) after midnight the evening before your surgery unless otherwise instructed by your orthopedic physician.
  • Refrain from smoking or drinking alcohol for 24 hours prior to surgery.
  • Please call your surgeon if you develop any of the following prior to surgery:
    • A cold, sore throat, fever, flu, or another illness
    • A cut, scrape, rash, or skin condition that occurs near the site of surgery
  • If you are taking aspirin, ibuprofen, Coumadin or another blood thinner, or vitamins or herbs, you will be given instructions by your surgeon or primary care doctor regarding these medications prior to surgery.
  • Do not schedule dental procedures or a colonoscopy for at least 2 weeks prior to or after your surgery date.

Day of Orthopedic Surgery – Before Surgery

  • Leave all valuables including jewelry, money, credit cards, checkbooks, etc. at home.
  • Remove rings and jewelry from both hands.
  • Do not wear any cosmetics to the surgery center (e.g. lipstick, mascara, eye shadow, and nail polish).
  • If you wear contact lenses, be sure to bring the storage case and all care and use items with you.
  • Medications: refer to Pre-op Orders as instructed by your surgeon’s nurse unless instructed differently by your primary care doctor.
  • If using an inhaler and/or insulin, please bring it along with you to surgery.
  • Please shower or bathe the evening before or the morning of surgery.
  • You may brush your teeth but be careful not to swallow any water or toothpaste.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing.

Day of Orthopedic Surgery

(Out of deference to your privacy, we offer walled cubicles for preoperative care and recovery.)
  • Patients are instructed by their nurse when to arrive. Please note, your arrival time is not your surgery time.
  • Check-in with the receptionist. Surgical release forms will be reviewed and signed. Patient’s Pain Medication Policy will be reviewed and signed.
  • When the nurse takes you to be admitted for surgery, one to two family members may stay with you until you leave for the operating room. While you are in surgery, your family may wait in the waiting room, and your doctor will speak with them after the surgery is complete. WI-FI is available in our waiting area.
  • Your anesthesia provider will see you before you enter the operating room.
  • You will be given a gown to wear. Your belongings will be placed in a small bag and stored in the postoperative area.
  • Your blood pressure, pulse, and temperature will be checked and you will be asked to empty your bladder. An IV will be started by a registered nurse or anesthesiologist.
  • When it’s time for your surgery, you will be taken to the operating room. EKG patches will be placed on your chest and a blood pressure cuff on your arm. A clip put on your finger will measure your oxygen level. Your anesthesia provider will give you medication through your IV that will make you drowsy or allow you to drift off to sleep.

After Orthopedic Surgery

  • After resting for a while, you will be given fluids to drink, and your family will be able to see you. If needed, pain medications will be given. Before going home, you will be given both oral and written discharge instructions. Your coordination, judgment, and ability to react may be impaired for a time after surgery. You should not drive a motor vehicle for 24 hours unless otherwise permitted by your surgeon.
  • When you are ready to go home, you will be discharged from the Woodland Surgery Center to the care of a responsible adult.
  • Refrain from smoking to optimize your healing process.
  • Do not consume alcoholic beverages when taking prescription pain medication.
  • Do not drive if taking prescription pain medication.
  • A registered nurse will call you the day after your surgery to see how you are doing. If you have questions prior to this call, please call your surgeon.

Remember to follow all your doctor’s instructions when you return home and keep any appointment with your physician.