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Surgery preparation list

  • Fill any Rx your doc prescribes prior to surgery. Go right after your pre-op appointment, don’t wait until the last minute as the pharmacy might not have them in stock. We learned this the hard way! You may be prescribed an antibiotic, pain meds, and anti-nausea meds. You may not be able to open pill bottles, so either ask for help from your caregiver or get a medication sorter and sort before you head to the hospital.
  • Get stool softeners to reduce constipation from pain meds; ask your provider what is best for you.
  • Get dry shampoo and/or wipes. You likely won’t shower until your post-op appointment. Plan to be in a compression vest as well.
  • Stock up on food:
    • High protein diet
    • Teas, ginger chews, cough drops to soothe your throat after intubation
    • Vitamin C for healing (our provider recommended 500mg/day)
  • Take off work 2-3+ weeks for rehab (depending on the physical demands of your work). Plan up to 5-10 weeks to return to baseline (ask your surgeon for guidelines specific to your surgery).
  • Arrange transportation to and from the hospital. Arrange dependent care (pets/kids/etc). Identify a primary caregiver or schedule of caregivers (loved ones who will help with intimate activities like dressing, bathing, toileting, etc.).
  • Bring zip up/button up baggy clothing, sweat pants and easy on/off shoes, glasses, ID, etc. to the hospital.
  • Groom yourself ;) cut toe nails, shave, get a haircut, etc. Do whatever you need to do to be comfortable with your appearance for 2-3 weeks post surgery.
  • Shower but do not use moisturizer or products on skin/hair.
  • Leave your jewelry/valuables at home.
Please remember that every body is unique. This is a GENERAL guideline. It is best to seek guidance from a rehab professional (OT/PT who specializes in top surgery rehab) and listen to your own body. If any recommendations are painful or cause negative symptoms, STOP! Discuss these guidelines with your surgeon as surgical protocols may vary.