Mollie Baldenegro BSN, RN

The days leading up to surgery can be an anxious time for patients. Thinking about the different medications, dressings, and recovery will cause anyone to become a little antsy. And this can affect the outcome of the surgery without you even knowing it.

But just like the surgical team that starts preparing for your surgery days before, you must do the same—don’t forget you are also the most important member of this team.

Understanding and following preoperative instructions is very important—like when to stop eating and when to discontinue certain medications. Not all medications need to be stopped, so it’s important to understand which ones do.

Your comfort, rest, and piece of mind are also very important, and they are all the responsibility of the patient while still at home.

And, I don’t know how many times the patient comes in on the day of surgery with jeans, or a nice white shirt, even heels! Then they come to find out that after the surgery all they really want are their pajamas. Come in wearing clothes you sleep in. It’ll make your transition home easier.

Your surgeon and your care coordinator will tell you everything you need to know, but don’t be shy about it and ask lots of questions!

Mollie is the Director of Nursing at Ocean Surgery Center