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Preparing for Surgery

Our surgical team works with you before and after your procedure to help ensure a safe, successful result.

Baystate can even help you prepare for your stay at the hospital. We also provide resources to ease your return home as well as guidance on financial assistance.

Resources and Support

If you’re having surgery at Baystate, don’t hesitate to make use of our support and resources:


Your First Visit

On your first visit to our office, we ask that you:

  • Plan to arrive 15 minutes early to complete intake paperwork.
  • Bring any X-rays or other pertinent health-related materials.
  • Bring your insurance card and photo ID.
  • If your insurance requires a referral, please contact your primary care physician to be sure that one is in place.
  • Current list of medications and allergies.
  • Insurance co-payments and/or deductibles.

The Day Before Surgery

  • After midnight, do not drink, eat, or take anything by mouth including gum, candy, applesauce or cough drops. 
  • You may only have sips of water to take your medications.
  • Do not drink any alcoholic beverages and do not use any recreational drugs, including marijuana, for 48 hours before surgery.
  • Please refrain from smoking. Your surgeon can give you specific instructions on smoking cessation.  Reminder: Baystate Medical Center is a smoke free environment.
  • You may brush your teeth without swallowing any water.
  • You will receive a reminder call in the afternoon or early evening the day before surgery. The preoperative nurse will review important information regarding your surgery.

Day of Surgery

  • Please bring a photo ID, insurance card and check or credit card for your co-payment if required.
  • Visitors are not allowed to have food or beverages in the preoperative or postoperative/recovery rooms.
  • For their safety, please leave small children at home.
  • Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing.
  • No cell phone use in pre-op area.

Prior to Coming to the Hospital

  • MEDICATIONS  Please bring an up-to-date list of all medications you take.  Please include the name, dose, and how many times a day you take each medication.  Please note the last date and time you took each medication. Bring inhalers with you.
  • ALLERGIES  Please confirm your allergies with the nurse and notify the health care team of any new allergies.
  • EQUIPMENT  Bring your CPAP machine. If you have a pacemaker/defibrillator please notify the preoperative nurse of the manufacturer (example: Medtronic). Bring a copy of the manufacturer's card with you.
  • OTHER  Leave jewelry and money (except your co-payment) at home. Have your family bring your overnight bag once you are settled in your hospital room. The preoperative unit does not have a locked area and very limited space.
  • Do NOT wear perfume, cologne, lotions, oils or deodorants. Do NOT shave near your operative site prior to your surgery.Shaving increases your risk for infection.
    Contact lenses, all jewelry including wedding bands, all piercings (for example tongue ring), wigs/toupee (may be removed just prior to surgery), all makeup, all nail polish including fingernails and toenail polish, hair ties, clips and pins. You may be required to trim or shave your facial hair. 
  • YOU CAN BRING: Dentures, hearing aids, and eye glasses (case) - but you will be required to remove them prior to surgery.

Arrival at the Hospital

  • Day Stay Surgical Patients - Arrive at Baystate Medical Center Chestnut Surgery Center at the time indicated on your white Preadmission Evaluation Instructions.  If you are late, your surgery could be delayed or canceled. Be sure to check in with the registration secretary, located on the ground floor. Your co-payment will be collected at that time.
  • Inpatient Surgical Patients - Please check in at the registration desk in the Daly Lobby.  Your co-payment will be collected at that time. You will then be directed to proceed to the Surgical Family Waiting Room.
  • In preoperative unit you will be cared for by a preop registered nurse who will prepare you for surgery.
  • You will be asked to remove all your clothing including undergarments and wear hospital attire.
  • After the nurse has completed the admission process, two family members can stay with you until you go into the operating room.
  • You will also meet with your anesthesiologist, operating room nurse and surgeon.
  • If you wish, your surgeon will speak to your family after the surgery is complete.
    After surgery, you will be brought to the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (recovery room) where they will closely monitor you.
  • Inpatient Surgical Patients - Family visitation may be allowed in the recovery room.
  • Day Stay Surgical Patients - Before discharge you will receive instructions about what to do, what not to do, and how to care for yourself at home.
  • You may need to fill prescriptions at a pharmacy before going home. Baystate Medical Center has a pharmacy in the Daly building.
  • If you have any pain, nausea or vomiting, please inform the nursing staff. They will use the pain scale from 0-10. 0= no pain 10= severe pain


  • Inpatient Surgical Patients - You will be given an incentive spirometer. Please use this as directed to help prevent pneumonia.