Preparing for Surgery

Before Surgery

To ensure your safety you must discuss any and all medications that you are taking with your surgeon so he has the details of your medical history and your medication history.

If you are having any medical difficulties prior to surgery, please let the surgeon's office know immediately of the issues.

If you have any non-emergency medical problems the morning of surgery, like you wake up with a fever; flu-like symptoms; sore throat, etc., and if it is before 8:00 a.m. please call the Hospital or Surgery Center that your procedure is scheduled at:

Tucson Medical Center:
(520) 382-8600 
5301 E. Grant Road
Tucson, AZ 85712


Northwest Medical Center:
(520) 742-9000
6200 N. La Cholla Blvd.
Tucson, AZ 85741


Northwest Tucson Surgery Center:
(520) 877-6700
6320 N. La Cholla Blvd., Suite 100
Tucson, AZ 85741


Oro Valley Hospital:
(520) 901-3500
1551 E. Tangerine Road
Oro Valley, AZ 85755


Carondelet Foothills Surgery Center
(520) 877-5660
2220 W. Orange Grove Road
Tucson, AZ 85741

If it is after 8 am, please contact the surgeon's office:

  • East: (520) 784-6200
  • Northwest: (520) 382-8200
  • Oro Valley: (520) 544-9700

If you have an emergency please call or have a family member call 9-1-1 and tell them you are having a medical emergency and what the nature of the emergency. They will respond immediately to assess the problem and take care of you.

Eating and Drinking

The information listed below are general instructions, because of the different surgeons/surgeries and patient health information/history you may be given different instructions per your surgeon. You must follow your surgeon’s instructions, if you have any questions please contact your surgeon’s surgery scheduler for clarification.

For adults and children over the age of 5:

If your surgery time is before 12 noon: You may NOT eat or drink anything (nothing by mouth; NO water, mints or gum) after midnight.

If your surgery time is after 12 noon: You must not eat or drink anything, including water for eight hours before your scheduled arrival time for your surgery unless instructed by your surgeon.

For children under the age of 5:

NO solid foods for 6 hours prior to the surgery, but they may continue clear liquids until 4 hours prior to the surgery. At 4 hours prior to surgery, the child may NOT have ANYTHING by mouth.

***Please be aware that if you do not follow the above listed criteria, due to health risks, your surgery may be cancelled or postponed.

Day of Surgery

Your surgery date, location and arrival time will be included in the packet provided by your physician's surgery scheduler. Please review the packet for specific instructions on what to do the day of surgery. The following are some general Do's and Don'ts for your surgery day.

Remember any ordered EKG/Lab work should be done as early as possible, but preferably 1 or 2 weeks prior to your surgery. Click here for Pre-Admission Testing.

DO:

  • Bring a photo ID (i.e. driver's license, military ID), your insurance card, and any co-pay/deductibles with you.
  • Accompany children undergoing surgery. All minors MUST have the parent or legal guardian in the building at all times while the child is under our care.
  • Bring any legal documents regarding Guardianship, Emancipation, or Power of Attorney. We will require that a copy of all legal documents be in the patient's chart, prior to the start of surgery.
    • Please note that our facility does not require Living Wills/ DNR orders, however, if you have one, we will place a copy of it in your record, and should a hospital transfer become necessary, a copy will be transferred with you.
  • Wear loose comfortable clothing; easy to get in and out of. If you are having a shoulder procedure it is best to wear a button up shirt and one that is too big for you. Please minimize make-up and fingernail/toe polish. It is preferred that none be worn.
  • Bring glasses, if you wear them. Contacts must be removed before surgery.
  • Bring a rescue inhaler (i.e. Albuterol) on the day of surgery, if you use one. Many times the anesthesiologist will have you use it just before surgery.
  • Bring a favorite toy/blanket for small children to make them feel more comfortable prior to and following their surgery. If the child requires a bottle or sipper cup, please bring one with you filled only with water or apple juice, for after surgery.

DO NOT:

  • Smoke or drink alcohol 24 hours before the surgery.
  • Bring any valuables or jewelry to the facility. All rings that are loose enough to come off should be removed, including wedding rings, and they MUST be off the hand on the side we are working on.
    • If the ring will not come off (i.e. wedding ring and we are working on the left), you will need to have the ring cut off or we will have to cancel/reschedule the surgery.
    • ALL piercings must be removed for safety issues. If you are afraid that the piercing will close, you may remove the piercing in the pre-op area.

Following Surgery

When leaving the hospital, follow the post-operative directions as instructed by your nurse. Below are guidelines to keep in mind following surgery.

  • You MUST have a driver available to take you home. If this person is not waiting for you in the lobby, we must have a VALID CONTACT PHONE number and they must be within 30 minutes of the surgery center.
  • Someone MUST be with you for the 24 hours following surgery. You may NOT be home alone or cared for by a child under 16 years of age. You also must not be responsible for small children during this time.
  • There is absolutely no driving, operating heavy machinery, or making major/legal decisions for 24 hours following the surgery due to the lingering effects of anesthesia.
  • Following your surgery, you will be discharged with written medication prescriptions that will require you to get them filled at the pharmacy (Unless you have already been given a prescription by your surgeon prior to your surgery). Please note that we do not give you pills to take home, nor do we have a pharmacy in the building. If you will have any problem filling the prescriptions following surgery, please call your surgeon PRIOR to your surgery date to request them ahead of time. You may call 784-6200 to make these arrangements.
  • If your surgery requires you to be on crutches, we can supply them to you, but they are charged to your insurance company. Please check with your insurance company; we use ELITE CARE, and it is possible that your insurance company will not accept charges from them.
    • If your surgery requires any DME or equipment for after surgery and the location that the surgery is being done at does not supply it, you will be given a prescription from your surgeon to pick up. If you are unable to use, or do not want crutches you will need to obtain a prescription from the doctor's office for walker/ roll-about or wheelchair and then obtain the product from a medical supply company.

Additional Information

It is our goal at Tucson Orthopaedic Institute to provide all of our patients with the safest care possible. Many patient injuries are attributed to a patient's lack of knowledge or understanding regarding their health care. Tucson Orthopaedic Institute would like to take this opportunity to provide you with information about being an advocate for yourself and your family members while seeking any type of health care. The following information contains some quick tips that will allow you to be better informed regarding your care as well as your overall health status.

  • Be sure to ask questions. If you have any questions or don't understand the information a healthcare provider has given to you, ask again. You have a right to know about all aspects of your care.
  • Always pay attention to the care you receive. If something doesn't seem right to you ask for clarification. It is important that you don't assume anything when it comes to your health and the care you receive.
  • Educate yourself about your diagnosis. Talk with your doctor and learn what you need to know about your care, treatment plans, and recovery times. Being a responsible consumer of healthcare is vital.
  • If you are unable to advocate for yourself, ask for help. You have a right to have an advocate to speak on your behalf, if you are unable to do so yourself.
  • Know what medications you are taking at all times. Medication errors are the most common health care mistakes. You are the only reliable way for a healthcare worker to obtain this information accurately, and completely. Keep an updated list of all your medications, including dosages, and the reason you are taking them with you at all times. Ask each healthcare provider you see to update your list each time they change, add, or delete a medication.
  • Use facilities that have proven they are safe by way of accreditation. Accreditation is a way of assuring that a facility has proven their commitment to patient safety and providing quality care.
  • Participate in your healthcare. Always be informed, you are the most important person of your health care team.
Tucson Orthopaedic Institute - East Office
5301 E. Grant Road
Tucson, Arizona 85712
Phone: (520) 784-6200
Fax: (520) 784-6187
Monday – Friday: 8 am – 5 pm
Tucson Orthopaedic Institute - Northwest Office
6320 N. La Cholla Blvd., Suite 200
Tucson, Arizona 85741
Phone: (520) 382-8200
Fax: (520) 297-3505
Monday – Friday: 8 am – 5 pm
Tucson Orthopaedic Institute - Oro Valley Office
1521 E. Tangerine Road, Suite 101
Oro Valley, Arizona 85755
Phone: (520) 544-9700
Fax: (520) 618-6060
Monday – Friday: 8 am – 5 pm