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Surgery Checklist and Preparation

Before Your Visit

Our goal is to make your surgical experience as pleasant and easy as possible. Preparation before your surgery helps us to focus on giving you the best care possible.


You will receive a phone call from the pre-op nurse at least two days prior to your scheduled surgery. Please have a list of your current medications (including their dosage and time taken) and allergies by the phone when we call. At this time, we will review which medications to take (if any) on the day of your surgery. It would also be important to alert us if you have a pacemaker/defibrillator. If we have been unable to reach you, please call 734-475-4009 and leave a name, phone number, and time for us to call you back.

You may also receive a call from our surgical services authorization coordinator. He or she may need to review insurance and co-payment issues with you.

How To Prepare

To ensure your safety and to avoid delays, please follow these instructions. This will help to ensure your comfort and reduce complications.

No Food or Drink

Do not eat or drink anything after midnight before your surgery. Doing so can create life-threatening complications that can result in the cancellation of your surgery.

Your Health

Please notify your physician if you have a cold, fever, infection, skin rash, or any other kind of open wound before coming in for surgery. Do not shave near your surgical area as this may irritate your skin, leading to an infection. Please refrain from smoking for at least 12 hours prior to your surgery.

Leave Valuables at Home

Please leave all jewelry, wallets, purses, and cell phones at home. If you wear contact lenses, please bring your case and/or glasses, as you will not be allowed to wear them during your surgery. Do bring glasses and hearing aids along with a case to put them in. We will give them to your responsible adult companion to manage during your surgery.


Generally, we schedule our patients to arrive 1 to 2 hours before their surgery. It is very important that you arrive on time. We need this time for registration and to perform any pre-op requirements outlined by your surgeon. If you have the need to empty your bladder when you arrive, notify the waiting room attendant.

If you will be late or cannot keep your surgery appointment, please contact us as soon as possible at 734-475-4055. You may call as early as 6 am.

Responsible Adult Companion

You will be required to bring an adult companion (over the age of 18) with you the day of surgery. For outpatient surgery, this person will be responsible for driving you home and staying with you for 24 hours after your procedure. Please make arrangements if you have small children, as they are not allowed in the surgery areas.


You will be escorted from the surgery waiting room to the pre-operative area. Here you will meet with the surgical team who will review your history, answer questions, and discuss your anesthesia options. You will be able to speak to your surgeon to review your surgery and mark the site, if applicable. After your preparation is complete, your adult companion may sit with you until you go back to the operating room.


Prior to surgery, the equipment and supplies are gathered and set up. A nurse and a member of the anesthesia team will take you back to the surgery suite. Once all staff have verified the surgical site, your surgery will begin.


After your surgery, you will be transported to the Post Anesthesia Care Unit. Your responsible adult companion will be able to visit you there and receive discharge instructions for your care at home. For your safety, this adult must drive you home.

Your surgeon will make every effort to talk to your family regarding your surgery once it is done.

You will remain in the recovery room until you meet the discharge criteria. You may be a little dizzy when you attempt to sit up and get dressed. One of the nurses or your companion will assist you in dressing and help you into a wheelchair. We will then ask your companion to bring the car to the surgery entrance door and we will assist you into the car.

Inpatient Discharge To The Nursing Unit

If you are a patient staying overnight, you will also have discharge criteria to meet before going to your room. If you have had a spinal anesthesia, you will need to be able to move your legs before we transfer you to the nursing unit. You will then be taken to your room by stretcher where the staff will assist you into your bed.

At Home For Outpatients

Please do not drive, drink any alcoholic beverages, sign any legal documents, or do anything strenuous after your surgery, until you are instructed to do so by your doctor. It is important that you rest and follow your post-op instructions. You will receive a follow-up call from the St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea surgery staff the next day. If you or your family has any questions prior to our call don't hesitate to call your surgeon. Their number will be on your discharge sheet.

We pride ourselves on maintaining your privacy and providing a safe environment to our patients. If at any time you have questions or concerns, please let us know. Our goal is to provide you with the best care possible.

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St. Joseph Mercy Chelsea | 775 South Main Street, Chelsea, MI 48118 | 734-593-6000