6 Ways to Prepare for Your First Surgical Procedure - 6 Ways to Prepare for Your First Surgical Procedure

You are likely to feel some anxiety at the prospect of undergoing a surgical procedure for the first time. That’s understandable because even a relatively minor operation is stressful. One of the best ways to deal with the stress is to take a proactive approach. Learn everything you can about the procedure. Follow your surgeon’s instructions to prepare for the operation. Taking the proper steps will improve the chances of a successful surgery, and it will help you recover more easily after you leave the hospital.

Talk to Your Surgeon

Discuss your upcoming surgical procedure with the surgeon, and address any concerns you have. Inform her about all prescription and over-the-counter medications you are taking. Include any vitamins or supplements you take because they may cause unexpected effects such as excessive bleeding.

Stock Up on Food

You don’t want to go shopping for groceries right after you come home from the hospital. Make sure you have plenty of food and household supplies on hand. You may not feel much like cooking, so plan a post-surgery menu includes meals that are easy to prepare.

Recruit Helpers

Doing routine tasks at home the first few days may be difficult or impossible, so ask friends and family members to help out. If you live alone, recruit a friend or neighbor to pick up your mail and feed pets while you are in the hospital. Depending on the nature of the operation, you might need to have someone stay with you for a few days.

Donate Your Blood

Ask your surgeon if you might need a blood transfusion. You can donate your own blood. It can be stored and used for the surgical procedure at your request. Blood donations should be performed four weeks before surgery to allow your body time to recover.

Follow Instructions

You will receive instructions from the surgeon and hospital that should be followed exactly. Take all medications as prescribed. Avoid smoking or drinking alcohol prior to the operation. Do not eat or drink anything on the day of the procedure. Anything in your stomach may come up and get into your lungs, which is dangerous. Contact a hospital like Van Wert County Hospital if you have any worries or concerns.

Improve Your Lifestyle

Good health habits will help ease your recovery from surgery. Eat a healthy diet that follows sound nutritional guidelines. Exercising is also helpful because you will be physically fit. If you only have a short time before the operation, make these changes anyway. You will still feel better and recover more quickly.


The guidelines here apply to most surgical procedures. Depending on your individual situation, specific preparations may be required. Your surgical team will tell you about any special steps that you need to follow.