Preparing for Your Surgery

Your doctor’s office will schedule your surgery and, if necessary, an in-person interview with a Surgical Services nurse. If an in-person interview is not required, a nurse will contact you by phone prior to your procedure. Procedures that do not require anesthesia do not require an interview.

In-person interview

If you are scheduled for an in-person interview, you will visit with an RN who will review your medical history and update the anesthesiologist who will be caring for you in the operating room.

  • Please bring all medications with you, including over-the-counter and herbal supplements.
  • Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your interview to register. Park in Lot A, enter through the main hospital entrance, and check in at the registration area in the main lobby
  • Allow up to 2 hours for your interview process and testing.
  • Registration staff will direct you to the second floor surgery unit where Pre-Surgical Care is located.

Telephone interview

If your procedure does not require an in-person interview, a phone interview nurse will call you. He or she will review your medical and surgical history and medications. She will update the anesthesiologist who will provide your care during surgery.

Please be sure to give your surgeon’s office several phone numbers (work, home, cell) where you can be reached. If you will be difficult to reach by phone, please call Sentara RMH between 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at 540-689-1707. If no one answers, leave a call back number and a good time to reach you.

Since you are not scheduled for an in-person interview, you will need to make a separate phone call to register with Central Scheduling. Please call Central Scheduling at 540-689-6000 (choose option 1 for pre-registration) Monday-Friday, 6:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m.

Surgery Preparations

Tell your doctor as far in advance as possible of any changes in your plans regarding your surgery. Also tell your doctor if you develop a cold or any other illness. It is very important for your doctor to know your condition prior to surgery. Discuss with your doctor what medicines you should take prior to your surgery and advise him of any over-the-counter medicines or herbal supplements.

Guidelines for Eating and Drinking

The pre-surgical care interview nurse will provide detailed instructions regarding what you may have to eat or drink prior to your surgery and review any special instructions from the surgeon. Follow all instructions carefully. Failure to follow these instructions may result in the delay or cancellation of your surgery. Please avoid gum and/or mints after midnight.

Advance Directives

If you have an Advance Directive or living will, please bring a copy with you the day of surgery. If you would like more information on an Advance Directive, please ask your nurse.

Family and Companion Information

You will need an adult to escort you to and from the hospital on the day of your surgery. If possible, this person should also accompany you to the preoperative interview so he or she can be included in all instructions given. This person will be responsible for your valuables, clothing and for taking you home after you are discharged.

For your safety, you will not be admitted to or discharged from the outpatient center without an adult as your escort. If you are going home the day of the surgery, we require that you arrange for someone to stay with you during the first 24 hours after your surgery. At the time of your interview, you will designate persons with whom we may discuss medical information.