Going into hospital

If you are going into hospital for an operation, an MSG nurse will usually carry out your pre-operative assessment.

Depending on the type of procedure and your age, this can include a blood test, urine test, MRSA swabs (skin swabs of your nose and groin), vitalograph (a breathing test) or an ECG (an echocardiagram that records the electrical signals in your heart).

You will also see an anaesthetist and you should bring a list of your medications to this appointment.

Going into hospital as a day patient or an inpatient can be a worrying experience, especially if it’s your first time. We will do all we can to help you to understand the procedures involved and minimise any concerns.

Going in for an operation

You will receive a letter with the time and date of your admission to hospital and whether or not you should eat and/or drink beforehand.

Some patients having a local anaesthetic can eat and drink on the day of the operation. If you are having a general anaesthetic, we will tell you at what time you need to stop eating and drinking.

Your consultant will let you know whether you should take your usual medication on your operation day.

We recommend that you leave valuables including any jewellery at home, but you can keep your wedding ring on. Please do not wear make-up, nail varnish or false nails as medical and nursing staff need to see your natural colour after treatment.

Day patient care

We will write to you with the time and date of your Day patient unit (DPU) appointment.

The hospital will supply a theatre gown, but you may want to bring slippers and a dressing gown. Lockers are provided for your belongings.

After surgery, you need a peaceful environment to aid your recovery, so we do not encourage visitors. After a general anaesthetic or sedation, you should not drive, drink alcohol or operate machinery for at least 24 hours.

It is not unusual to feel tired for several days. You should arrange for a relative or friend to drive you home and you should not be alone for the first 24 hours after the procedure.

You can contact the DPU on 725241 ext 4493.

Admission to a ward

If you need more than a day in hospital, you will be admitted to a ward. We suggest you take with you two nightdresses/pyjamas, a dressing gown, slippers, toiletries, towels, books and magazines.

Please go to the Porters’ lodge, where you will be directed to your ward. On the ward you will be introduced to the nursing staff responsible for your care and a nurse will help you complete your admission documents and a care plan to meet your individual needs.

Bring with you supplies of any medication you take regularly, with the correct dosages on the packaging.

After your operation your specialist and other members of the medical team will visit you to ensure that your recovery is progressing well.