Start with answering these questions:
- Are your physicians qualified?
Ask your physicians about their experience performing the specific procedure you are having to make sure they are qualified with the appropriate medical education and training.
- Is the facility licensed and accredited, and are emergency procedures in place?
If you are having surgery outside of a hospital — at an outpatient facility or your doctor’s office — be sure it’s licensed.
Also make sure the facility has medications, equipment and procedures in place to handle emergencies, especially if there is no emergency facility nearby.
- Who will provide the anesthesia?
Be sure your anesthesia care is led by a physician anesthesiologist.
He/she will meet with you before surgery, closely monitor your anesthesia and vital functions during the procedure and take care of you after to assure your recovery is smooth and your pain is controlled.
- Am I as healthy as I can be?
Spend the time before the procedure being as active as you can, eating right and getting good sleep.
If you smoke, stop as soon as possible — even if it’s just a day or two before surgery — because smoking can cause problems with breathing and recovery from anesthesia and surgery.
Other steps you take will be guided by your meetings with the medical team.