South Texas Surgical Center

Pre & Post Op Instructions

The Night Before Surgery

  • Please do not eat or drink anything after midnight on the evening before your surgery.
  • If you are taking medications for high blood pressure, diabetes or nervous disorders, contact your surgeon for additional instructions.
  • Medications and anesthesia may be harmful to a fetus, especially in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. If there is the possibility of pregnancy, please contact your surgeon prior to undergoing surgery.
  • Notify your surgeon of any changes in your health or if you have been exposed to any communicable diseases.
  • Please do not drink alcoholic beverages 24 hours prior to your surgery.

The Morning of Surgery

  • You should arrive at the Center one hour prior to the scheduled surgery time with your photo ID and insurance card.
  • Bathe the morning of surgery. If you shampoo your hair, make sure it is dry and do not use hairspray.
  • Do not wear makeup or lipstick.
  • Wear loose fitting, casual clothing that can be easily removed.
  • Do not bring rings, watches or other valuables to the Center.
  • Bring a list of all prescriptions you are currently taking with you on the day of surgery including frequency and dosage.
  • Bring a written list of known allergies as well as an explanation of what they do to you.
  • Remove fingernail polish.
  • Children are encouraged to bring a favorite stuffed toy.

Prior to Surgery

  • Patients must sign a surgical consent form before any medication can be given or surgery performed.
  • Minors must have a parent or legal guardian sign a consent form before surgery can be performed.
  • Patients should not leave the Center unless they are under the care and supervision of a responsible adult. This may be a friend or relative who can drive the patient home.
  • Smoking 24 hours before or after surgery may be detrimental to your recovery.

Following Surgery

  • Do not drive, sign important papers or make critical decisions for at least 24 hours.
  • Do not operate machinery, power tools, etc. for at least 24 hours.
  • Do not drink alcoholic beverages for at least 24 hours.
  • A representative of the Center will contact you after surgery to inquire about your condition.
  • Your surgeon will provide you with post-operative instructions regarding diet, rest and medication. In the event of any difficulties or complications, call your surgeon immediately.

Discharge Instructions

If you had general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation, pay particular attention to the following instructions:
  • Do not drink alcoholic beverages including beer for 24 hours. Alcohol enhances the effects of anesthesia and sedation.
  • Do not drive a motor vehicle, operate machinery or power tools for 24 hours. If a child, no bicycle riding, skateboarding, etc.
  • Do not make important decisions or sign legal documents for 24 hours.
  • You may experience light-headedness, dizziness and sleepiness following surgery. DO NOT STAY ALONE. A responsible adult should be with you for this 24-hour period.
  • Rest at home with moderation. It may not be necessary to go to bed. However, it is important to rest 24 hours following general anesthesia.
  • You may resume eating just as you did before surgery. If you are feeling nauseated start with liquids such as soft drinks, soup or Jell-O gradually working up to solid foods. We do not recommend spicy or greasy foods the first day.
  • If taking medication, be careful as you climb stairs, you may experience dizziness and difficulty with depth perception.

Wound Care Instructions

  • Leave your bandages on for at least 24 hours, or until an office visit is directed by your physician.
  • Keep wound and dressing clean and dry. Water can help bacteria infect your wound.
  • Check for signs of infection daily. Pain, swelling, temperatures of 101 degrees and above, extreme redness and drainage from wounds usually means infection.
  • For discharge instructions based on your procedure, visit the patient registration page.


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