Instructions Before Your Surgery or Procedure

Share
This resource cannot be sent to your patient.
You can view and print as a PDF in Standard Font or Large Font.
Time to Read: About 2 minutes

These instructions will help you know what to eat and drink before your procedure or surgery at MSK. They will also help you know what medicines to take.

We will talk with you about these instructions during your presurgical testing (PST) appointment.

Instructions for eating and drinking before your surgery or procedure

These instructions are to keep you safe. It is dangerous to have food or liquid in your stomach when you get sedation or anesthesia. Following these instructions will help make sure your stomach is empty.

It is very important to follow these instructions. If you do not follow them, your surgery or procedure will be delayed or canceled.

Your healthcare provider may tell you to stop eating or drinking earlier than what’s written here. If they do, follow their instructions.

Instructions for eating

Stop eating at midnight (12 a.m.) the night before your surgery or procedure. This includes hard candy and gum.

If your healthcare provider told you to stop eating earlier than midnight, follow their instructions. Some people need to fast (not eat) for longer before their surgery or procedure.

Instructions for drinking

Between midnight (12 a.m.) and 2 hours before your arrival time, only drink the liquids on the list below. Do not eat or drink anything else. Stop drinking 2 hours before your arrival time.

  • Water.
  • Clear apple juice, clear grape juice, or clear cranberry juice.
  • Gatorade or Powerade.
  • Black coffee or plain tea. It’s OK to add sugar. Do not add anything else.
    • Do not add any amount of any type of milk or creamer. This includes plant-based milks and creamers.
    • Do not add honey.
    • Do not add flavored syrup.

If you have diabetes, pay attention to the amount of sugar in these drinks. It will be easier to control your blood sugar levels if you include sugar-free, low-sugar, or no added sugar versions of these drinks.

It’s helpful to stay hydrated before surgery, so drink if you are thirsty. Do not drink more than you need. You will get intravenous (IV) fluids during your surgery or procedure.

Stop drinking 2 hours before your arrival time. This includes water.

Instructions for taking medicines before your surgery or procedure

Take these medicines the night before your surgery or procedure:
(Take these medicines the night before your surgery or procedure)




Take these medicines the day of your surgery or procedure. It’s OK to take them with small sips of water:
(Take these medicines the day of your surgery or procedure. It’s OK to take them with small sips of water)




Stop taking these medicines ____ days before your surgery or procedure:
(Stop taking these medicines ____ days before your surgery or procedure)




Stop taking these medicines ____ days before your surgery or procedure:
(Stop taking these medicines ____ days before your surgery or procedure)




These are new medicines you will start taking:
(These are new medicines you will start taking)




Stop taking any vitamins, supplements, or herbal remedies 7 days before the day of your surgery or procedure.

Stop taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Advil® and Motrin®) and naproxen (Aleve®), 2 days before the day of your surgery or procedure.

Additional information

A staff member will call you after the day before your surgery or procedure. If your surgery or procedure is scheduled for a Monday, they’ll call you the Friday before. If you do not get a call by , call 212-639-5014.

The staff member will tell you what time to arrive for your surgery or procedure.

If you have any questions about these instructions, call Presurgical Testing at 212-610-0488. You can reach a staff member Monday through Friday from to

This information was given to you by:
(This information was given to you by)
 


Last Updated

Monday, June 3, 2024

Tell us what you think

Tell us what you think

Your feedback will help us improve the educational information we provide. Your care team cannot see anything you write on this feedback form. Please do not use it to ask about your care. If you have questions about your care, contact your healthcare provider.

While we read all feedback, we cannot answer any questions. Please do not write your name or any personal information on this feedback form.

Questions Yes Somewhat No
Please do not write your name or any personal information.