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Information for patients
Theatres and Anaesthetics
We look forward to welcoming you to the Day Surgery Centre and we will make every effort to make your visit as comfortable and as pleasant as possible. This information aims to put you at ease and to answer any questions you may have.
After reading the information, please do not hesitate to talk to us should you feel concerned in any way.
If you wish to talk to us before the day of your admission, please call is on 01709 424585, 01709 424565 or 01709 424566 to speak to someone in the Pre-admissions Centre.
Before your operation you will have a pre-operative assessment. This is to ask you some questions about your health to check you are fit for surgery and to go home on the same day.
Some tests and investigations may also be done at your pre-operative assessment.
You may be away from home for the whole day. When you are discharged home you will need a responsible adult at home who is able to take care of you after your operation.
If you have a dependant relative or child who needs you at home, please make alternative care arrangements for at least 48 hours after your operation.
Telephone 01709 424566 or 01709 424585.
If you are phoning to cancel or postpone your surgery, please do not contact the Day Surgery Centre or Theatres Admission Unit unless it is the day of your surgery. Please contact pre-operative assessment on the numbers above.
If you are having an operation that requires you have a general anaesthetic, regional anaesthetic, spinal anaesthetic or any sedation you will need to starve/fast (be nil by mouth). This means nothing to eat or drink.
It is important to fast before an anaesthetic so that your stomach is empty of food and drink before your operation. If there is food or drink in your stomach during your anaesthetic it may come up into the back of your throat and into your lungs which could damage them or make you very unwell.
If you do not follow your starving instructions, your operation will be cancelled.
Nothing to eat after 2am, this includes food, milk, sweets and fizzy drinks. You are encouraged to drink water or clear fluids before your operation. Please do not drink after 6am but you can have sips of water until you are admitted.
Nothing to eat after 7am, this includes food, milk, sweets and fizzy drinks. You are encouraged to drink water or clear fluids before your operation. Please do not drink after 6am but you can have sips of water until you are admitted.
If you are unsure about how to prepare for your surgery, please call your pre-operative assessment nurse, or you may risk your surgery being cancelled.
You will be admitted to either Day Surgery Centre (DSC) or the Theatre Admissions Unit (TAU). You will be informed of which department to attend at your pre-operative assessment or by the scheduler when your operation date is confirmed.
Please note that the time you are asked to arrive is not necessarily the time at which you will have your operation.
Once you arrive at the Day Surgery Centre or Theatre Admissions Unit please report to the reception desk where you will be welcomed to the unit, your details will be checked and you will be admitted to the unit.
You will be asked to change into a theatre gown and to put on your dressing gown and slippers. You are allowed to have sips of water until you are collected for theatre unless you are told you are not allowed to.
A nurse will record your blood pressure, pulse and temperature. It may be necessary to take some further blood samples or send you for different tests.
A surgeon will discuss your operation with you and complete the consent form unless completed already. It may also be necessary to mark your skin with a marker pen to identify the operation site.
If you are having a General anaesthetic, spinal or regional anaesthetic, you will also see an Anaesthetist who will discuss your general health with you and assess whether you are fit enough to have an anaesthetic. Please refer to the ‘You and your anaesthetic’ leaflet for more detail about anaesthetics.
If you are female and aged between 12 and 55 you will be asked permission for a pregnancy test to be taken prior to your surgery. This is usually a urine test but may need to be a blood test. If you know you are pregnant before your admission please tell us.
The day surgery unit is divided into male and female seated waiting areas and also has a limited number of consulting rooms where patients can wait until it is time to go to Theatre. Some patients for day surgery are admitted via Theatres Admission Unit.
The day surgery ward is divided into male and female areas and does not have any cubicles but does have curtains around each bed space to maintain privacy as needed.
If you have a preference of where you would like to wait please mention this to the nurse who admits you.
Once your operation is over, you will be taken to a recovery area near the operating theatre, where you will be closely monitored until you are awake. When you wake up you will be breathing oxygen through a clear mask - don’t be alarmed everyone gets this after an anaesthetic.
You may feel drowsy, this is normal and will pass. You will be left to rest for a short time. We may have to do some checks to make sure you are recovering safely but will try not to disturb you unnecessarily.
If you have had a spinal anaesthetic or regional anaesthetic you may be taken directly to the day surgery ward in Day Surgery Centre as soon as your surgery is complete instead of theatre recovery.
Once you are awake and the team are happy with your recovery you will be offered a light snack and a drink. Once you have eaten, you will be moved to the recovery lounge where the nursing staff will begin to prepare your discharge information.
Please note that for some procedures you may be in the Day Surgery Centre for most of the day.
When we discharge you, we do this with your relative or carer. This is to ensure you retain all the information we give you. If for any reason you wish to be discharged alone - please tell the nurse.
If you are at all worried about your condition, telephone the Day Surgery Centre on 01709 426500 and ask to speak to a nurse - between the hours of 8am and 8pm.
After 8pm please contact the second contact number which can be found on your discharge letter.
On very rare occasions, patients may need to be transferred to a ward for an overnight stay.
When this happens it is usually due to:
We will ensure that your contact/relative is kept informed.
Whilst nobody would describe a stay in hospital as enjoyable, we hope to make your admission as pleasant as possible. If you have any comments or suggestions on our service please let us know.
Either contact the Patient Experience Team or the Day Surgery Centre and ask to speak to the nurse in charge.
Anaesthetist - The doctor in charge of your pain relief and anaesthetic.
General anaesthetic - Makes you asleep for the operation.
Regional anaesthetic - Numbs the area being operated on.
Spinal anaesthetic - Makes you numb from the waist down.