Before your procedure

Q. Do I need to contact you before my procedure?

There is no need to routinely contact us. We endeavour to ensure that all patients are contacted via email or text message as soon as we are notified of your procedure by your surgeon's rooms. This includes information about anaesthesia, an introduction to your anaesthetist, and details of your anaesthetic fee.

If you have not received this information from us, or require an urgent quote, please contact us.

Q. Can I eat and drink before my anaesthetic?

"Fasting" is important to ensure your stomach is free from food or liquid at the time of your procedure. Inadequate fasting may result in your procedure being delayed or postponed to another day, or even worse a complication during the procedure. Please follow the guidelines below.

MORNING PROCEDURE: Finish all meals by midnight prior. This includes milk products and orange juice. Clear fluids (water, cordial, clear apple juice) are allowed until 0600.

AFTERNOON PROCEDURE: Finish all meals by 0700. This includes milk products and orange juice. Clear fluids (water, cordial, clear apple juice) are allowed until 1100.

Exceptions to these guidelines include endoscopy procedures (where fasting instructions are provided by your proceduralist) and paediatrics (where individual fasting instructions will be provided to you by your anaesthetist).

Q. I am on regular medications. Should I take them prior to my procedure?

Blood thinners: Your surgeon will tell you if you need to stop any of your blood thinners. It is important to let your surgeon know if you've had any heart stents inserted, especially in the last twelve months.

Diabetic medications: Some diabetes tablets must be stopped prior to certain procedures. If you've not received instructions with regard to your diabetes tablets, please contact us. If you take injectable insulin, please contact us for specific instructions about your insulin - this will depend on the timing of your surgery.

All other medications: You should take all of your other regular medications as usual unless you have been told by your surgeon to stop them.

Please contact your surgeon or anaesthetist if you have any questions.

For more information see this website.

Q. What if I'm feeling unwell before my procedure?

Elective surgery should be performed when you are in optimal health, in order to minimize the risk of anaesthetic and surgical complications.

If you are feeling unwell in the days leading up to your procedure, you should see your GP, contact your surgeon, and contact us on (02) 6925 5918.

If you are feeling unwell on the day of surgery, present to the hospital as planned. On arrival, you should advise the nursing staff of your symptoms. You will be assessed by a nurse and your anaesthetist, who will talk to you about the safety of having your anaesthetic and surgery at that time.

Q. What can I do to make my anaesthetic safer?

We recommend the following strategies:

  • Stop smoking: ideally six weeks before surgery, but the longer the better. You should never smoke 24 hours before your procedure. See your GP for help to quit smoking. We know it's tough, but it's worth the effort! Further information is available here.
  • Regular exercise: whether it's regular walking or hitting the gym, exercising for half an hour a day will improve your health
  • Avoid alcohol: alcohol has many ill-effects on your health and should be avoided prior to your procedure
  • Follow all fasting and medication guidelines
  • Bring all your medications (including original packaging) and any medical devices (e.g. CPAP machines) with you on the day of your procedure, even if you are not staying overnight.