Hospital  >  Patients & Visitors  >  About your hospital stay  >  Surgical Services  >  Pre-anesthesia clinic

Pre-anesthesia clinic

If you are having surgery at Sunnybrook, you will usually have a pre-anesthesia assessment about two weeks before surgery.

During the assessment you will be asked about your medical history, the medications you take, and any special needs you might have after your operation.

A staff member will tell you whether you will need to come to the hospital for the assessment, or if it can be done over the phone.

An administrator will contact you to book your appointment, or you can choose to book using Sunnybrook's digital assistant.

In-person assessments

If your surgeon has ordered medical tests or consultations, you will need to come to the hospital for your assessment.

  • The full assessment is usually three hours.
  • Please arrive 20 minutes early to register.
  • Be prepared for delays caused by traffic or additional tests.
  • Make sure that you do not have any conflicting appointments on the day of your assessment.

Registration for the Pre-anesthesia Clinic is in room B1-11, on the first floor of B-wing at Sunnybrook’s Bayview campus.

Preparing for an in-person assessment

On the day of your assessment, eat and drink normally, take all of your regular medications, and dress comfortably.
Bring one friend or family member with you. Please bring someone to translate for you, if necessary.
You must bring:
  • your Ontario health card;
  • ID showing your name, date of birth, and address;
  • contact information for your family doctor and pharmacist;
  • contact information for any specialist doctors you have seen;
  • ALL of your medications, vitamins, and supplements in their original packaging
  • a medication list from your pharmacy, if available
  • your WSIB claim number and any additional insurance, if applicable
  • the information card for your pacemaker or ICD, if you have one.

Be prepared to discuss your medical history, including allergies and reactions to medication. Make a list of any questions you have.

Wear comfortable clothing. Do not wear any fragrances or hairspray. Please do not bring more than one person with you; seating is very limited.

What to expect at the hospital

You will meet with a nurse for testing and for information about preparing for surgery. You may also see a pharmacist for a medication review, and a doctor for an anesthesia consultation. Your surgeon will not be at the assessment.

Nursing assessment

At the assessment a registered nurse will:

  • go over your medical history and needs;
  • tell you how to prepare for your surgery
  • perform any tests your surgeon ordered (like blood work, electrocardiogram, or X-ray);
  • tell you how to manage your pain after surgery; and
  • explain how to plan for discharge from the hospital

Pharmacist consultation

A pharmacist may need to see you for a medication review. Please bring all your medications and supplements in original packaging with you to the assessment.

The pharmacist will:

  • make sure your medications are safe to take before surgery;
  • tell you which medications, if any, you should stop taking before your operation; and
  • answer your questions related to medication.

Physician consultation

You may also need to see the doctor who will be putting you to sleep on the day of surgery (the anesthesiologist).
The doctor will:

  • assess your health to make sure you are not at high risk for complications;
  • tell you what to expect during and after surgery;
  • answer your questions about anesthesia; and
  • arrange additional medical tests or referrals to specialists, if necessary.

Late arrival policy

We try to see every patient as close to their appointment time as possible, but patients arriving late cause the entire daily schedule to fall behind. If you are late by 30 minutes or more, you may be asked to reschedule.

We do our best to see latecomers, but patients who are on time will be seen first. If you are late, you may be seen between patients as staff becomes available, which will cause very long wait times. If you do not want to wait, you can reschedule your appointment.

Telephone assessments

If you do not need any medical testing and do not have a problematic medical history, you will usually be booked for a telephone assessment.

If you are booked for a phone assessment:

  • You do not need to come to the hospital.
  • A registered nurse from the pre-anesthesia clinic will call you to conduct the assessment over the phone.
  • The nurse will call within one hour of your selected time.

The call will be 30-60 minutes in length.

Preparing for a telephone assessment

Before your telephone assessment, make sure you have:
  • your Ontario health card
  • contact information for your pharmacy
  • ALL of your medications, vitamins, and supplements in their original packaging
  • a medication list from your pharmacy, if available
  • a pen and some paper for taking notes

Take the call in a quiet area where you will have some privacy.

Make sure you will be available to answer the phone for the hour of your requested appointment time.

What to expect over the phone

The nurse will call you to review your medical history and medications, and tell you how to prepare for surgery. You will have a chance to ask questions.
  • Please have your information and medications with you before you take the call.
  • Be prepared to answer up to one hour after your appointment time. You will be called as close to your selected time as possible.
  • Please make sure that your surgeon’s office has your daytime phone number, and that you will be able to answer the phone.


Clinic staff will need to review any and all medications you are taking. You must have all your medications and supplements in the original containers or blister packs with you for your assessment.

Some medications can cause dangerous side effects when combined with drugs used in surgery.

Please bring all:

  • pills and capsules
  • injectable medications
  • inhalers/puffers
  • cough syrups
  • medicated patches
  • eye drops
  • ear drops
  • medicated creams/ointments
  • laxatives/diuretics
  • over-the-counter medications
  • vitamins
  • dietary supplements
  • naturopathic medications
  • herbal remedies

If you do not have original containers, please retain any packaging you have.

Tell clinic staff if you are taking something in addition to what is listed above. Tell your healthcare team about any allergies and reactions you have had to medications in the past.

Important information

We do our best to keep you informed throughout the surgery process. Please read through the information below.


Assessments can take several hours, and are sometimes delayed due to emergencies.

  • Please do not book other appointments that may overlap with your assessment. We do our best to stay on schedule, but be prepared for delays.
  • If you have a phone assessment, do not come to the hospital. Make sure you will be able to answer the phone for the full hour after your appointment time, and that you are prepared.
  • If you are coming to the hospital, please arrive 20 minutes early. Make sure you have no appointments just before or just after your assessment, and please come prepared.


If you are not a Canadian resident, or if you do not have OHIP, you must make payment arrangements with the Patient Accounts office before your surgery date.

If you are using private insurance, please have your insurance information with you for your assessment appointment.

Location and contact

Pre-anesthesia clinic 

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
2075 Bayview Avenue
B-wing, 1st floor, room 11 (B1 11)
Toronto, ON M4N 3M5

Phone: 416-480-6822

Clinic hours:
Mon-Fri, 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (Closed weekends and holidays)

Directions | Parking

Garage parking is recommended.
Please arrive 20 minutes early for your appointment.
Please do not wear any fragrances.