Preparing For Your Stay

We want every stay at our Lovelace Hospitals to be as pleasant and comfortable as possible. Our health care team is dedicated to anticipating and exceeding the needs of patients and families.

What to Expect

We would like to thank you for choosing Lovelace for your care. Our friendly and professional surgical team is dedicated to providing you with an excellent surgical experience.

The Pre-Op Assessment Clinic Nurse will interview you for surgery in-person or over the phone. Please have your medication list and medical/surgical history handy. This interview will take 15-20 minutes.

Before Surgery

During your phone call or visit, the Pre-Op Assessment Nurse will:

  • Review medications/supplements you take now
  • Review medical/surgical history
  • Review anesthesia/sleep apnea history
  • Confirm procedure, side/site
  • Discuss post-op pain management
  • Discuss labs/EKG/chest x-ray (if ordered)
  • Discuss what medications to take day of surgery
  • Discuss when to stop eating/drinking before surgery
  • Discuss what time to arrive day of surgery
  • Discuss Joint Camp options, if necessary
  • Answer questions or address any special needs

Contact Number
Please give us a number where you can be reached on the day of surgery. This will allow us to reach you should your surgery time be changed at the last minute.

Post Surgery Medications
If you are given a prescription by your surgeon, please have it filled before your surgery.

Night Before Surgery
Shower or bathe (reduces normal bacteria on your skin) and brush your teeth. Follow any special bathing instructions your doctor provided. Also, follow instructions for when to stop eating and drinking.

Day of Surgery

Before you come to the hospital:

  • Shower or bathe
  • Brush your teeth
  • Wear clean, loose and comfortable clothing
  • Remove all body jewelry/facial piercings and leave at home
  • Do not wear makeup or lotion
  • Wear glasses - do not wear contacts (bring the  case)

What to bring with you:

  • Any paperwork from your surgeon
  • Photo ID and insurance card
  • Copy of Living Will or Medical POA
  • Brace, sling or crutches (if applicable)
  • Someone over age 18 to drive you home
  • Co-payment (if applicable)
  • Sleep apnea patients should bring their CPAP machine. Please empty water prior to arrival.

Eating and Drinking:

  • Do not drink alcohol or take street drugs for at least 24 hours before your surgery
  • No smoking or tobacco-use the day of surgery
  • Nothing to eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery
  • Take only medications as instructed
  • Your surgeon or nurse will instruct you as to any special diets before surgery

Arriving for Surgery

Admitting: (Registration)

  • Complimentary valet parking is available at the main hospital entrance
    Mon. - Fri. 5:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.
  • Enter hospital at the main entrance and check-in at the registration desk to complete your registration packet.
  • If necessary, deductibles or co-payments will be collected at this time.
  • After registration, you will be directed to the surgical area.

Pre-Op Area

During Pre-Op:

  • Go through the patient verification process
  • Take tests for allergies, vital signs, labs (if indicated), blood glucose (if diabetic), urine pregnancy test (if female of child bearing age), and possible drug screen
  • Change into a hospital gown, review medications and medical/surgical history, and review or sign surgical consent
  • Have your IV started with any medications your surgeon ordered (small children generally do not get IV in Pre Op area)
  • Visit with your surgeon to answer any last minute questions and get your operative site marked (if your surgery involves laterality)
  • Visit with the anesthesia provider to discuss anesthesia, answer questions and sign consent
  • Visit with your operating room nurse to review patient ID, procedure, allergies, etc
  • Your surgical site may require preparation


  • We welcome and encourage visitors, however, we may need to limit how many are with you at one time, or ask visistors to take turns
  • Parents of children having surgery will remain with them before and after surgery. You must remain in the building at all times during your child’s surgery
  • Small children cannot be left unattended in the surgical waiting area at any time. They are not allowed in the recovery area as a visitor.

After Surgery

Outpatient Surgery Patients:

  • Your surgeon may speak with your family in the waiting room or call them on the phone.
  • You will be taken to the recovery room until you awaken, then one family member will be allowed to be with you (usually one hour after arrival).
  • Parents of children having surgery will be able to be in the recovery room.
  • The nurse will evaluate you, give you pain medications and discharge you home or to your room.
  • You should expect some pain after surgery, but we will make every effort to safely minimize your pain and keep you comfortable.
  • We use a pain scale 0-10. 0=no pain and 10=severe pain
  • You will be given written discharge instructions when going home.
  • An adult (over age 18) must drive you home.
  • We recommend that a responsible adult be with you at home for the first 24 hours after outpatient surgery.
  • We may call 24-48 hours after your surgery to see how you are doing.

Inpatient Surgery Patients:

All of the After Surgery list (above) will apply, plus:

  • Pack a small suitcase with bathrobe, basic toiletries, and reading material. Please leave valuables at home.
  • Meal times for inpatients are 7:30 a.m., 11 a.m., and 4:30 p.m.
  • For your safety and well-being, please allow us to assist you when getting out of bed.


Translation Services are available at all Lovelace facilities.

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