Pre-Op and Post-Op Instructions

Before Surgery | After Surgery | First Weeks Home

Surgical Procedures (Before Surgery)

What to expect before and after

Knowing what to expect can help make your hospital stay more comfortable and your recovery easier.

The Day Before

The surgical department at Long Island Spine will give you personalized instructions regarding preparing for your surgery, but generally most patients are instructed to observe the following directions starting 24 hours before the surgery.

  • Please follow bathing instructions that were given to you at your pre-surgical testing appointment.
  • Do not drink or eat any solid foods after midnight the night before your surgery. If you are a diabetic, talk to your physician as to when you should stop eating.
  • If you take daily medications, your primary care physician and/or cardiologist should discuss the timing of when you should stop these prior to surgery. Medications like blood thinners such as coumadin, or asprin, medications for high blood pressure, heart arrhythmia or diabetes are especially important. Click here for additional information about stopping medications
  • If you become ill prior to your surgery (cold, flu, fever etc.), it is essential that you call us immediately. Our office and the hospital requires 72 hours to cancel your surgery time.

The Day of Surgery

The day of surgery will be very busy and it's important you arrive on time. The following directions will help your day to run smoothly.

  • Please follow bathing instructions that were given to you at your pre-surgical testing appointment.
  • Please leave your valuables at home (money, credit cards, jewelry, etc.).
  • Avoid body lotions and make-up.
  • If you wear glasses, contacts, dentures or a hearing device, please bring them with storage case.
  • Bring clothing that will be comfortable and easy for you to put on, including sneakers or other sturdy, flat shoes.
  • Bring toiletry items and your back brace (if applicable)
  • If you are scheduled for outpatient surgery, please arrange for your transportation back home. You will not be permitted to drive yourself.

Arrival & Pre-Op Preparations

You will spend time in several areas of the hospital in preparation for your surgery. You may be asked many of the same questions repeatedly; be patient this questioning is done for your safety.

Depending on the rules at the hospital, your family should be allowed to stay with you through the early preop process. Your medical and surgical histories, medications, allergies and preoperative process will be reviewed in detail. Vital signs including weight, blood pressure, oxygen levels, heart rate, and temperature are recorded. If your physician has ordered any other preoperative tests, they will be performed.


An intravenous catheter will be inserted and fluids will be administered including antibiotics and sedatives.


You will meet with the surgical team including the anesthesiologist, the surgeon and nurses, in the preoperative holding area. Risks, complications and questions will be reviewed again and answered. Please bring a list of your questions if need be.

The Operating Room

After you have spoken to both the anesthesiologist and your surgeon, you will be taken to the operating room (OR) and your family will be sent to the waiting area. The hospital staff will communicate with your family during and after the procedure. The surgeon will speak with your family after the surgery as well.