Preparing for Surgery

Whether you or a loved one is having outpatient or inpatient surgery at Mary Greeley Medical Center, there are key things you should know before you arrive. If you have any other questions about your preparation, your procedure or any other concerns, please contact your doctor’s office. If you must cancel or reschedule your procedure, please call at least 24-36 hours in advance.

Pre-Admission & Pre-Registration

  • Pre-registration is necessary to ensure that we have all of your pertinent insurance and contact information. To speed up registration on the day of your procedure, please complete our online pre-registration form. Please make sure you have your insurance cards handy before completing the online pre-registration form.
  • Registration staff will contact your insurance company to verify eligibility and satisfy any pre-certification requirements. If any questions arise, they will contact you. If you have any questions regarding specific policy benefits or your financial responsibility, please call your insurance company directly.
  • Your physician may require tests such as blood and urine samples, chest X-ray and electrocardiogram. Often these tests need to be completed before admission. Your physician will arrange for these tests to be done.
  • If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to call GI registration at (515) 239-3664 Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Preparing for your Surgery

  • You will receive preparation instructions from your physician for the procedure you are having. It is important to follow these instructions carefully for a safe and complete exam and sedation. Failure to comply may result in cancellation of your procedure. Your physician will also tell you when you arrive for your procedure.
  • If you develop a cold, sore throat or fever, notify your physician before you are admitted.
  • On the day of your Ambulatory Care Services appointment, please come to the Information Desk inside the main entrance of the medical center. Free valet parking is available at the main entrance to the hospital for your convenience.
  • Arrange for an adult friend or relative, over age 18 with a drivers license, to drive you to and from the medical center. Due to the sedative received during many GI procedures, patients are not allowed to drive until the day after the procedure. This means no taxi, no CyRide and no walking home please.
  • Please arrive at the time specified by your physician. The admission time allows the staff to prepare you for the surgery or procedure and is not the actual time of your procedure. Exact surgical and procedural times will vary with each patient's needs.
  • Most procedures are done on an outpatient basis. When a patient is admitted, a nurse reviews the procedure with them and answers any questions. Before the procedure, the patient is given a moderate sedative so that they are relaxed and more comfortable. Depending on test, the procedure can take from one minute to one hour. The patient then relaxes in recovery at the unit. A relative or friend can wait in your prep room while you have your procedure. The physician will discuss the findings with them after the procedure, with your permission.

Preparing for Anesthesia

Anesthesia affects different people differently, but there are certain guidelines to help you prepare for anesthesia. They include:

  • Follow surgeon instructions on when to stop eating and drinking before your surgery.
  • Brush your teeth, but do not swallow any water. 
  • Please shower or bathe with soap the evening before or morning of your procedure.
  • Do not remove hair from the surgical site as you may develop a rash after the procedure. 
  • If you take any medications routinely, check with your physician about taking any medications the morning of your surgery.
  • If your physician instructs you to take medication, do so with a small sip of water.

What to Bring

We’re committed to your comfort and recovery before, during, and after surgery. Please follow these guidelines:

  • We ask that you bring only one visitor. Two adults may accompany a child patient. Because of limited space and the close proximity of other recovering patients, please do not bring children.
  • Bring the following items:
    • your health insurance cards
    • your contact case and supplies, if needed
    • glasses, if needed 
    • hearing aids, if needed 
    • a list of your medications and allergies 
    • a change of clothing (especially underwear) for children
  • Do not bring:
    • any valuables such as cash or jewelry
    • any home medications with you - you will not be allowed to take them while at the medical center.

Post-Surgical Care

Patients play an important role in their post-surgical care, especially when it comes to avoiding surgical site infections. This video has some great advice on what you should do when you get home after surgery.

Request an Appointment

Schedule your appointment with a primary care physician or specialist.

Request an Appointment

We Can Help

First Nurse

  • First Nurse: Talk to one of our nurses 24 hours a day for free health care advice, resources and referrals! Call 515-239-6877 or 800-524-6877.