What can I expect when I come into have my surgery?

Plan to arrive at least 1-2 hours prior to your scheduled surgery time.  However, please defer to the instructions from your surgeon's office.  This allows for any necessary paperwork to be completed as well as for the preop staff to get you ready for surgery.  You may need to have preoperative lab work drawn or other tests done upon preop admission. 


Dress with loose, comfortable clothes that are easy to change.  Please do not wear make-up.  Please do not bring in valuables or jewelry.  Your belongs will be secured during surgery, but items cannot be guaranteed.  If you do have valuables and no family member to accept them, arrangements can be made with the security department.  

If you were contacts, usually they will need to be removed prior to surgery - even if you sleep in them.  Your eyes do not make sufficient lubrication while asleep under anesthesia and wearing contacts can put you at risk for corneal injury or infection.  You may bring contact solution and case and remove them in preop or just wear your glasses.

What about my medications?

Bring a list of all the medications that you are currently and/or have recently taken.  Please check with your surgeon's office to see which of your medications should be taken either the night before or the morning of your surgery.  Please be aware that some medications such as blood thinners (coumadin, heparin shots, etc) may need to stopped several days before your surgery.  Again, it is extremely important to follow the preop instructions from your surgeon's office to avoid a delay or even a cancellation of your procedure.

I think I might be getting a cold or flu.  What do I do?

If you have had a change in your normal health, contact your surgeon's office immediately.  They will instruct you with further directions.  If you cannot reach the office, you may still come in to the preop area.  Your anesthesiologist will assess whether or not there are any issues that could affect having surgery.  

I really can't eat or drink anything? 

The American Society of Anesthesiologists has developed NPO or fasting guidelines for any patient having surgery, regardless of whether you are having a general anesthetic or light sedation.  In general, do not eat any solids 8 hours before your scheduled surgery.  You may drink clear liquids up to 3 hours prior to your surgery.  Clear liquids are any liquid you can see clearly through, such as: water, apple juice, cranberry juice, black coffee, tea, white grape juice.

Refrain from eating dairy, fried, or greasy foods. 

Infants Nursing/Formula - Patients need to abstain at least 4 hours for breast milk and 6 hours for formula.

These guidelines were established to minimize the chance of aspiration (stomach contents getting into your lungs while asleep under anesthesia.) 

IMPORTANT - Please error on the side of caution on not eating or drinking if there is a chance that your scheduled surgery might start earlier than your original time.  Remember, schedules change and your appointment may wind up being earlier.

When will I see my anesthesiologist?

You will have a chance to meet your anesthesiologist shortly before you are brought to the operating room.  You will be interviewed and given a focused physical exam.  The anesthetic plan will be discussed and you will have a chance to ask questions.  Don't hesitate to ask anything as we are here to put you at ease and make your surgical experience as positive as possible.

Insurance and Financial 

Fees charged by St. Joseph Valley Anesthesia are for professional anesthesia services and are in addition to your surgeon and hospital/surgery center fees.  We will bill your insurance provider for you. Any balance that your insurance provider does not cover is your responsibility. 


We accept most major insurance carriers and offer financial payment arrangements for those patients who lack insurance coverage, but wish to have their procedure performed at Saint Joseph Regional Medical Center or Allied Physician’s Surgery Center.


If you have billing questions or need to discuss special financial arrangements, please call 877-746-7090