Picture of a woman with water splashing to her face

Pre-Surgery Checklist

This is a sample Pre-Surgery Checklist used by many doctors. It is not to be relied upon for medical purposes and it is not to be construed as medical advice. Please consult your own doctor for the pre-surgery requirements for your own surgery.

Please bring to our attention any medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or any cardiac problems. Such conditions should be stabilized prior to surgery. Please also let us know if you are under any medical treatment for.

  • Anticoagulants (i.e. coumadin).
  • Diuretics.
  • Insulin or oral hypoglycemic drugs.
  • Medications for high blood pressure.
  • Thyroid supplements.
Two weeks prior to surgery STOP:
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Smoking or chewing tobacco
  • Vitamin E
  • Garlic
  • Ginseng
  • Also discontinue aspirin and aspirin-containing products no later than two weeks prior to your surgery. These products may interfere with healing and contribute to excessive bleeding during surgery.
The day before surgery.
  • Shampoo and shower twice.
The night before surgery.
  • Do not eat or drink anything after midnight.
  • Do not eat 8 hrs. before surgery.
On the day of surgery.
  • Do not wear make up, creams or lotions.
  • Remove any contact lens.
  • Brush your teeth and take a regular shower.
  • Approved routine medicines may be taken with a sip of water in the morning.
  • Wear comfortable loose fitting clothes. Avoid anything that must be put over your head if you are having facial, breast, or abdominal surgery, wear button front shirts for easy removal. Do not wear high heels, tight jeans, rings, jewelry or nail polish. Leave all valuables at the Costa Rica Medical Center Inn, except your passport and method of paying the doctor (i.e. credit card or travel checks). The hospital has safes for the protection of the items you bring.
  • If you should develop a fever, cold, flu, migraine, sore throat, diarrhea, rash or other illness, please let us know. Surgery may have to be postponed under certain conditions.
  • Please keep away from mosquitoes to avoid being bitten. Excessive poison in the blood will result in the postponement of your surgery.
  • Avoid overexposure to the sun before surgery, and please do not go on a stringent diet, as both can inhibit your ability to heal.
  • Exercise is an important way to prepare yourself for surgery. If you don't regularly exercise, start now, but gently. Don't exercise to soreness, especially if surgery is near.
  • Regarding medical tests, you may bring the test results with you, or you may have them done here as part of your pre-op visit at our hospital. If you are uncertain of your health, it would always be best to have tests done at home prior to making travel arrangements.
  • Required tests are the standard EKG if over 45 years of age and standard pre-op blood tests (full blood count, clotting profile, electrolytes, blood type).

In addition to the above do's and don'ts, it is also recommended that you stop taking the following medicines according to the schedule below. If any questions, please consult your personal physician for advice regarding IF you should stop, or IF there are any substitutions necessary.

  • Warfarin (Coumadin) - 1 week prior to surgery
  • Plavix (Clopidrogel) - 1 week prior to surgery
  • Systemic steroids - 6 weeks prior to surgery
  • Isotretinoin - 6 months to 1 year prior to surgery

Herbal/Health Supplements

  • Supplements and Natural foods high in salicylate (curry, pepper, ginger, paprika, thyme, cinnamon, dill, oregano, turmeric, licorice, peppermint, raisins, cherries, cranberries, oranges, prunes, grapes, strawberries, chewing gum, honey, wine, cider, vinegar) - 2 weeks prior to surgery
  • Vitamin E - 1 week prior to surgery
  • Fish oil/omega 3 fatty acids - 1 week prior to surgery
  • Gingko biloba - 1 week prior to surgery
  • St. John's wort - 1 week prior to surgery
  • Garlic - 1 week prior to surgery