How To Prepare For Outpatient Spine Surgery

Category: Spine Surgery | Author: Stefano Sinicropi

Second Opinion Surgery

Advancements in surgical techniques mean that many spine surgeries can be performed using minimally invasive methods and conducted in an outpatient manner. While it’s great that surgeons can allow a patient to leave the surgical center on the same day as their operation, it doesn’t mean that recovery will be a breeze. In today’s blog, we explain how to prepare for your outpatient surgery in order to give yourself the best chance at making a full recovery after your operation.

Getting Ready For Your Outpatient Spine Surgery

As your surgical date approaches, strive to check these things off your list.

  • Preoperative Exercise – Just because you have a surgery scheduled doesn’t mean you should just sit around waiting for that day to arrive. Now is a crucial time for strengthening key structures that will be needed during your recovery when your body is in a weakened state. Ask your surgeon about some pre-surgical exercises you can perform in the days and weeks leading up to your operation.
  • Medication Management – Talk to your doctor about managing any medications you are taking as your surgery date approaches. Some medications need to be stopped, while others can be taken as long as your doctor can account for their presence in your system. Let them know all the medications you are taking so they can reduce the risk of complications during your operation.
  • Prepare Your House – Prepare your house and your living areas for your return before you head to the clinic for surgery. Remove tripping hazards and consider investing in assistive devices like grabbers or toilet seat lifts if certain movements will be difficult while you recover from surgery. Coming home to a clean and prepared home is much safer and relaxing than coming home to a house in disarray. Prepare your living area before surgery, not afterwards.
  • Meal Prep – Once your living area has been prepped, it’s time to meal plan. Cooking or being on your feet for extended periods in the kitchen may be difficult for a while after surgery, and that can lead to poor dietary choices if you opt for unhealthy options like fast food delivery. Before your outpatient surgery, spend some time preparing some healthy, easy to reheat meals for your fridge so that you’ll have some simple options when you get back home.
  • Rides – It’s unlikely that you’ll be allowed to drive home by yourself after your outpatient surgery, so you need to make sure you have a ride home from the clinic. Don’t wait until the last minute to try to find a ride.
  • Destress – This is easier said than done, but try not to get worked up or stressed out about your upcoming operation. It may feel like it’s out of your control, but know that you’re trusting your operation to a skilled surgeon and that surgery will likely greatly help to improve your quality of life. Focus on all the positives that will come out of your operation assuming it all goes as expected, and it should be easy to control preoperative anxiety.
  • Heed Your Doctor’s Instructions – Finally, in the 24-48 hours before surgery, make sure you are adhering to your surgeon’s preoperative instructions as it pertains to your medications and food and water intake. When surgery day arrives, get to the outpatient center well in advance of your appointment time and bring all the necessary paperwork and insurance information so that everything runs smoothly.

For more tips for preparing for outpatient surgery, or for help with your back pain, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi’s office today.

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