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Preparing for Surgery

Inpatient Surgery

Prior to Your Surgery

We want to make sure the day of your surgery goes as smoothly as possible. One way you can help is by coming prepared. In addition, please review and fill out the attached documents and bring them with you the day of your appointment.

For patients at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center

  • Important information regarding your surgery. Please read this carefully and follow the instructions. (English or Spanish).
  • Fill out and bring with you the two attached forms:
    • Admission Medication History Form (English or Spanish)
    • Health History
  • Preparation checklist
    • Call the Procedure & Treatment Unit (PTU) the day before your surgery to find out what time to arrive at the hospital
    • Fill out the "Admission Medication History" and "Medical History" forms completely
    • Follow the guidelines regarding eating and drinking prior to your surgery
    • Bring any pertinent medical records to the hospital
    • Leave all valuables at home
    • Bring a copy of your Advance Directive (if you have one)
    • Inform the PTU staff if you will need a translator
    • Bring the information packet with you to the hospital, including the completed forms and the map

Outpatient Surgery


Preparation Checklist

If you are having outpatient surgery, it is imperative that a responsible adult accompany you to drive you home after your surgery, even if your surgery is performed under local anesthetic. YOU WILL NOT BE ALLOWED TO PROCEED WITH SURGERY UNLESS A RESPONSIBLE ADULT IS WITH YOU.

  • If you are taking medications on a daily basis, check with your primary care physician to find out when or if this medication should be discontinued.
  • Do not eat or drink anything (even water) after 12 midnight before your surgery.
  • Avoid aspirin or any over-the-counter medication containing aspirin or a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) for two weeks prior to your surgery. Tylenol is the only medication you should take for pain.
  • Avoid alcohol for 23 hours prior to your surgery, as alcohol can interfere with the anesthetic.
  • Leave all your valuables at home. Wear comfortable clothing.
  • Should you develop a cold or an illness before your surgery, please call your surgeon. If necessary, we may reschedule your surgery.


Please feel free to contact Lorena if you have any questions. Phone: (310) 794-8634.  GCarbonero@mednet.ucla.edu

What to Expect on the Day of Your Surgery

For Outpatient Surgery at the Surgical Center (Suite 660)back to the top

Peter Morton Building
200 Medical Plaza, Suite 660 (6th floor)
Los Angeles, CA 90095

On the day of your surgery, you will need to report to the reception desk in the Surgical Center (Suite 660). Please arrive at the check-in time you were given.

  • Once you have signed in and registered, you will be escorted to the preparation area.
  • You will then be asked to change into a gown. Your clothes will be placed in a clothing bag and placed in a locker.
  • You will enter a preparation area where your temperature, pulse, and blood pressure will be taken.
  • A nurse will take a health history.
  • Your family will be allowed to visit with you until you are taken to the operating room.
  • You will either ride on a hospital cart or walk to the operating room. A nurse will accompany you at all times.
  • If sedation is given during surgery, you may be taken to the post-anesthesia care unit. If you have not been given any sedation, you will not need to spend time in this unit. 
  • After your doctor performs your surgery, you will return to the dressing room where you will get dressed into your own clothing.
  • Post-surgical instructions will be given to you or your family by your doctor or nurses.
  • You will have to be picked up by a friend or family member and escorted home. You MAY NOT drive yourself home after surgery.
  • If any problems should occur after your surgery, please contact your doctor at his/her office.

What to Expect After Your Surgery

  • Patients must not work, drive, or use any dangerous machinery for at least 24 hours following anesthesia. You may feel good at one moment and dizzy or unsteady the next.
  • No alcoholic beverages or tranquilizers should be taken for at least 24 hours.
  • Eat and drink lightly after arriving home. Be sure you can keep food down before you eat and drink normal amounts.
  • Should any problem or changes occur in your physical condition, or if any questions arise, please call the doctor at his/her office.


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