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The day of surgery

On the day of your surgery, go to the Surgical Services Registration area. It is in M Wing, Ground Floor, Room 502 (MG 502).

Please arrive on time. Please do not have more than one person come with you.

What to expect

  • Your name, birth date, and your Ontario Health Card will be checked again
  • An armband will be put on your wrist
  • You will be seated in the waiting room until your name is called
  • You will be taken to the Pre-operative Room where you will be prepared for surgery by a Registered Nurse. This may take up to an hour. You will have an intravenous started, and your paper work will be completed. Your companion will be asked to wait in the waiting room at this time
  • Once you have been prepared for surgery, you may stay with your companion until the Operating Room is ready for you; no food or drinks are allowed in this area
  • If you are going home on the day of your surgery, or you are staying in the Surgical Short Stay Unit, your companion may wait in MG502
  • If you will be staying longer after your surgery, your companion may wait in A148
  • A volunteer is available and will give updates when patients are waking up from surgery

Surgical times are guidelines only. Delays are often expected. Sometimes, scheduled surgery cases are cancelled because there is someone else who needs emergency surgery, or there is no post-operative bed available. If this happens to you, you will be contacted by your surgeon's office and rescheduled as soon as possible.

After surgery, you will first go to the Recovery Room. When you are ready, you will be moved to your In-patient bed, the Surgical Short Stay Unit, or the Ambulatory Recovery area. PLEASE BE AWARE THAT DUE TO UNFORSEEN BED SHORTAGES, PATIENTS MAY SPEND THE NIGHT IN THE RECOVERY ROOM.

What will happen to me before and after my operation?

  • On the day of your surgery, an Anesthesiologist will review your health history, medications and allergies with you
  • You will be able to ask any questions you have about the anesthetic
  • If everything is fine, you will then go to the operating room
  • In the operating room you will move to the operating room table; there will be Nurses and Doctors in the room; your blood pressure and pulse will be measured; the OR team will perform a Surgical Safety Checklist while you are awake; you will breathe oxygen and be given medication to make you relax; you will then go to sleep; you will be monitored very closely during your surgery
  • After surgery you will go to the Post Anesthetic Care Unit (PACU, otherwise known as Recovery Room)
  • Your Anesthesiologist is still responsible for supervising your care in the Recovery Room; a Nurse trained in Recovery Room Care will be there for your needs; your blood pressure and pulse will be closely watched; you will have an oxygen mask on your face; the Nurse will give you pain medication
  • When you are awake, and your pain is well controlled, you will be ready to leave this area; you will be moved to your In-patient Unit, the Surgical Short Stay Unit, or prepare to return home through the Ambulatory Recovery Room

Please note that one visitor may be invited to the Recovery Room for a 5 minute visit when you have met the PACU Discharge Criteria, are awaiting your bed assignment and wish to have visitors. The PACU is a secured area, and your visitor will be accompanied by a volunteer. Visiting is allowed at the discretion of the PACU Charge Nurse. Volunteers work weekdays from 8am­-4pm and will update your visitor when new information is obtained.

What should I do if I am going home the same day as my operation?

You must have someone drive you home. You must have a responsible adult stay with you for the first night.
For the first 24 hours after your operation:

  • Do not drive
  • Do not drink alcohol
  • Do not make any major decisions
  • Do not operate any type of vehicle or machinery

If you become very ill at home, please return to the Emergency Department at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, or go to your local hospital. Let the doctor know you have just had surgery.