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Pre-Op Instructions

Your doctor may require that you have some checkups and tests before surgery to make sure you are ready.

Many different people on your surgery team may ask you the same questions before your surgery. This is because your team needs to have all of the information that give you the best surgery results. Try to be patient if you are asked the same questions more than once.

Pre-op Checkup

Pre-op is the time before your surgery. It stands for “before operation.” During this time, one of your doctors will ask you about your health over the years (this is called “taking your medical history”). Your doctor will also do a physical exam.

Your surgeon or primary care doctor may do this.

Try to have this checkup at least 2 or 3 weeks before your surgery. This gives your doctors time to treat any medical problems you may have before your surgery.

If you see your primary care doctor for your pre-op checkup, make sure your hospital or surgeon gets the reports from this visit.

Some hospitals will also ask you to meet with a hospital nurse during the week before your surgery. At this visit:

You may also see your anesthesiologist the week before surgery. This is the doctor who will make you sleep and not feel pain during surgery.

Visits with Other Doctors

Your primary care doctor or surgeon may ask you to see other doctors to make sure you are healthy before surgery. This may be because you:

Your surgeon will want to know that other health conditions you may have will not cause any problems during your surgery. Because of this, you may need to visit a:

Tests Before Surgery

Your surgeon may tell you need some tests before surgery. Some of these tests are for all patients. Others are done only if you are at risk for certain health conditions.

Some doctors or surgeons may also ask you to have other tests. This will depend on several factors including your age, general health, medical problems and the type of surgery you are having.

Make sure the doctors who do your pre-op tests send the results to your surgeon. This will help keep your surgery from being delayed.


Reference: NIH