For most people, an operation may be a worrying event, no matter the procedure or whether or not they have had surgery before. Surgery is never easy be it at any age. All surgeries need some type of preparation one being physical and the others being mental and financial. Though plastic surgery has gained a lot of awareness in the past decade and patient themselves are very aware of their requirements some amount of preparation is yet required before the procedure. Mumbai-based plastic surgeon Dr. Viral Desai shares a complete guide:
Know It All
Learn about your surgery and meet together with your medical team. Talk to your surgeon and to the expert who manages your comfort and care during the operation, your anesthesiologist. Ask them questions on everything, from risks to healing time.
Prepare your Mind
Before going under the knife be sure you are in your best health and familiarize yourself with the surgery from a reliable source. Fear of unknown leads to undue stress so it's best to have accurate information from your doctor rather than wondering 'what if'
* Avoid anxiety: People cope with anxiety in different ways. Some prefer to have detailed conversation with their doctor and know about the surgery, others prefer to discuss with their friends and family members. Studies have shown the best way to relieve the anxiety is by listening to music or by reading.
* Patients who get admitted in the hospital prior to surgery are given medications to enable them to get a good night sleep and to relieve their anxiety.
* Have no illusions of the expectations from the surgery. Know what to expect from your surgery.
* Success of the surgery does not hinge on the surgeon's expertise alone; your cooperation and preparation play an equal role too.
* Prepare yourself for enough recovery time so that you are mentally relaxed even post surgery for a couple of days .
Prepare your Finances
Get your finances sorted so that there is no stress during or after the surgery.
Inform your insurance company regarding the surgery beforehand.
Have a fair idea about the post surgical medications and the extra recurring cost which may occur.
Discuss Your Medical Conditions -Tell your doctor if you've got any health issues, including heart or lung disease, diabetes, high vital sign, dental work, arthritis, or drug allergies. Tell your doctor about all the medicine you take. Some can cause side effects during surgery. For example, blood thinners and aspirin can put you in danger for an excessive amount of bleeding.
* If your procedure is completed as an outpatient, make certain you arrange for someone to drive you to and from surgery and to stay with you for at least the first night following surgery.
* Follow instructions regarding food and drink; most surgeries require no eating or drinking after midnight.
* Stop smoking well in advance of your surgery. Smoking can create nausea and aggravate the lungs during surgery. It also slows down your recovery process.
* Rule out any other illness and get a fitness approval from the physician.
* Get the blood tested for bleeding time, clotting time and other tests for testing of any infections and proper functioning of liver and kidneys.
* Get all appropriate tests as suggested by the treating surgeon.
* Pack your bag the night before surgery. Bring any personal items that you simply might need.
* Remove credit cards or valuables from your purse or wallet the night before surgery.
* Do not wear any jewelry on the day of the procedure.
* Bring a container to hold your eyeglasses or contact lenses as needed.
* Bring comfortable clothes to wear after the procedure.
* Bring your insurance card, advance directive, living will or medical power of attorney documents.
The Day of Surgery
Arrive at the time your plastic surgeon recommends to ensure enough time to prepare for the procedure.
* Make arrangements for a caregiver to stay with you for the amount of time recommended by your plastic surgeon.
* After you are guided to the surgical area, ask any of the accompanying family members/friends to wait for you in the waiting area.
* Read through the consent form thoroughly and always ask your doctor about the possible pros and cons of the surgery.
* The physical preparation also requires preparing the concerned part to be operated on.
Immediately following surgery, you will be moved to a recovery area until the surgeon decides you are ready to be sent home or, less often, transferred to a hospital room or hotel for an overnight stay.
* You may feel pain, pressure, or a burning sensation where you were operated on. Tell your doctor if you need pain medicine while you're in the hospital. And ask what your options are for relief once you get home.
* You will be scheduled for a follow-up visit after your surgery so that the surgeon can monitor the healing process and remove any stitches, if necessary.
* Also, you will receive a list of discharge instructions and medication instructions as well as emergency contact information regarding resources from the surgical facility. If you have any questions, you should always call and speak to your surgeon.
When patients are adequately prepared psychologically and physically along with policies and guidelines have been followed, the risk of postoperative complications should be low, leading to a quick recovery.