Thank you for choosing one of the many services available at St. Petersburg General Hospital. This guide has been prepared to help you understand what to expect as an outpatient.
Testing and Interview
Your physician will discuss your procedure with you as well as any pre-testing that must be completed before the procedure.
Before your procedure, you will be contacted by St. Petersburg General Hospital to confirm your procedure and to set up a time for your pre-testing and pre-op interviews.
Any pre-testing ordered by your physician must be completed at least 72 hours before your procedure date. Testing may include lab work, electrocardiogram, or X-rays. If your doctor gives you any written orders or test results, please bring them with you at this time.
Your doctor or insurance company may require that your pre-testing be done at a facility other than at St. Petersburg General Hospital. If this is the case, please request and authorize a copy of the test results be sent to St. Petersburg General Hospital. You will then be contacted by phone for your pre-op interview.
The pre-op interview will be done at St. Petersburg General Hospital. At this time you will be asked for information regarding the date and verification for your procedure, and any special preparations. Please bring a list of any medications you are currently taking at this time, including their names and strengths.
On the day of your pre-op interview, remember to bring your insurance identification card(s) with you. It is important for the hospital to either verify coverage and/or obtain a pre-authorization for hospital services from your insurance company. If we are unable to verify coverage or your managed care insurance plan will not issue a pre-authorization, then payment will be due before treatment.
After your procedure, you may receive separate bills from your physician, anesthesiologist, surgical assistant, radiologist, pathologist, and any other auxiliary services required for your care. These fees are not part of your hospital bill.
If there is any change in your physical condition such as a cold, an infection, a fever, or if you begin treatment for any other medical problem, notify your surgeon immediately. This may affect your ability to have surgery.
The Day Before
Do not eat or drink anything after midnight before your surgery. This is important for your health. Bathe or shower and wash your hair the night before. Get a good night's rest.
What to Wear
Wear clothing that is loose fitting and easy to get in and out of, and low heeled shoes. Do not wear jewelry, make up, fingernail or toenail polish.
Leave all valuables at home including jewelry, money, and credit cards.
If you wear glasses, contact lenses, dentures, or a hearing aid and wish to have them with you during your pre- and post- procedure periods, please do so, but bring containers for them. Be sure to check and make sure you have these belongings with you at time of discharge.
Be sure to bring your insurance identification card(s).
The Day of Procedure
Take nothing by mouth, including water, coffee, soft drinks, juice, chewing gum, or candy, unless you are given specific written instructions.
Take no medications before surgery unless you are given specific written instructions to do so. If you must, take it with the smallest sip of water necessary.
Bring a list of your regular medications including names and strengths, if you not already done so. DO NOT BRING THE MEDICATIONS WITH YOU.
Bring your insurance identification card(s) with you.
Bring any additional forms or X-rays your physician has given you.
Bring a copy of your advanced directives (living wills, healthcare surrogate, etc.) if you have such arrangements. If not, information is available at the hospital.
If you have not pre-registered, you will complete the necessary forms at this time.
You will be asked to sign a consent form. This is for the procedure and states that you understand what is to be done, the risks involved, and that you agree to have the procedure performed by the physician named on the form.
You will then be taken to the pre-op area where a nurse will care for you.
You may bring a book or magazine to read in pre-op or post-recovery or take a nap.
It is absolutely required that you arrange to have someone drive you home after surgery. Patients are not permitted to be left alone after an operation. The nurses can help you estimate your discharge time so that you can make the necessary arrangements.
Your spouse, a relative, or friend may accompany you to the outpatient lobby. Since your stay will be for a few hours, other guests are discouraged. Waiting area space and guest facilities are limited, so please do not bring additional visitors.
In order to have an anesthetic for your procedure; you will require the professional services of an anesthesiologist. It is the job of the anesthesiologist to monitor vital functions, such as your heart rate and blood pressure, as well as providing you with the relief and protection from pain during your surgical procedure.
The anesthesiologist will review your case and answer any questions you may have before the procedure. You will meet with the anesthesiologist who will be taking care of you in the operating room hold area. At that time, you or your family may ask questions or discuss your options regarding anesthesia.
After Your Day Surgery
If you had an anesthetic you will be taken to the recovery room until your condition is stable. The length of stay there depends on the type of procedure and anesthesia you had.
While in recovery, your heart, blood pressure, and blood oxygen level are monitored by equipment supervised by a registered nurse. You will be asked to breathe deeply and cough to clear your lungs. You may be encouraged to move your arms and legs.
You may have side effects from the anesthesia. Report any discomfort to the nurse. The earlier it is reported the easier it is to relieve.
At this time, it is common for the doctor to talk with your family.
The auxiliary member in the waiting room will keep your family updated as to your location and progress.
If you have had sedation only and are an outpatient, you may be moved to the "step down" recovery area after your procedure. A nurse will monitor your progress and discharge you when you are recovered. You will receive written instructions at this time, and a prescription or follow-up doctor's appointment if necessary.
Post Procedure Instructions
A responsible adult must accompany each patient at time of discharge.
Take only those medications that have been specifically discussed with or prescribed by your physician.
After the procedure, you may experience some tiredness, dizziness, or decrease in appetite.
Do not eat or drink until you feel like eating. Resume intake slowly. Start with sips of liquid or chipped ice.
Any problems or questions should be discussed with your physician. Call you physician's office to arrange a follow-up appointment if one is not already scheduled.
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