Instructions for Pulmonary Procedures

This information will help you prepare for your pulmonary procedure at Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK).

About Your Procedure

The procedure you will be having is: _______________________________

Your procedure will be done at Memorial Hospital (MSK’s main hospital). The address is:

Memorial Hospital at MSK
1275 York Avenue
New York, NY 10065

Your procedure will be in either the operating room or the endoscopy suite. Your doctor or nurse will tell you where your procedure will be. They will also check off the correct box below.

  • The operating room
    Take the B elevator to Presurgical Center (PSC) on the 6th floor.
  • The endoscopy suite
    Take the M elevator to the 2nd floor.
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Before Your Procedure

Ask about your medications

You may need to stop taking some of your medications before your procedure. Talk with your doctor about which medications are safe for you to stop taking. We have included some common examples below.

Anticoagulants (blood thinners)

If you take a blood thinner (medication that affects the way your blood clots), ask the doctor performing your procedure what to do. Their contact information is listed at the end of this resource. Whether they recommend you stop taking the medication depends on the reason you’re taking it.

Do not stop taking your blood thinner medication without talking with your doctor.

Examples of Blood Thinners
apixaban (Eliquis®) dalteparin (Fragmin®) meloxicam (Mobic®) ticagrelor (Brilinta®)
aspirin dipyridamole (Persantine®) nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Advil®) or naproxen (Aleve®) tinzaparin (Innohep®)
celecoxib (Celebrex®) edoxaban (Savaysa®) pentoxifylline (Trental®) warfarin (Coumadin®)
cilostazol (Pletal®) enoxaparin (Lovenox®) prasugrel (Effient®  
clopidogrel (Plavix®) Fondaparinux (Arixtra®) rivaroxaban (Xarelto®)  
dabigatran (Pradaxa®) heparin (shot under your skin) sulfasalazine (Azulfidine®, Sulfazine®)  

Please read our resource Common Medications Containing Aspirin and Other Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). It has important information about medications you’ll need to avoid before your procedure and what medications you can take instead.

Medications for diabetes

If you take insulin or other medications for diabetes, ask the doctor who prescribes the medication what you should do the morning of your procedure. You may need to change the dose before your procedure.

Diuretics (water pills)

If you take any diuretics (medications that make you urinate more often), ask the doctor performing your procedure what to do. You may need to stop taking them the day of your procedure. Diuretics are sometimes called water pills. Some examples are furosemide (Lasix®) and hydrochlorothiazide.

Talk with a nurse and plan your care

Before your procedure, you will talk with a nurse to plan your care during your procedure. The way you talk with the nurse depends on where your procedure will be done. Your doctor or nurse will tell you what to expect. They will also check off the correct box below.

You may have medical tests to help plan your procedure. These tests may include an electrocardiogram (EKG) to check your heart rhythm, a chest x-ray, blood tests, and any other tests necessary to plan your care. These tests may be done before or after you talk with the nurse. The nurse may also recommend you see other healthcare providers.

  • If your procedure will be done in the operating room, you will have a Presurgical Testing (PST) appointment within 30 days of your procedure.

     

    You can eat and take your usual medications the day of your PST appointment.

    During your appointment, you will meet with a nurse practitioner (NP) who works closely with anesthesiology staff (doctors and specialized nurses who will give you medication to make you sleep during your procedure). Your NP will review your medical and surgical history with you. They will talk with you about which medications you should take the morning of your procedure. You will also have medical tests to help plan your procedure.

    It’s very helpful if you bring the following to your PST appointment:

    • A list of all the medications you’re taking, including both prescription and over-the-counter medications, patches, and creams.
    • Results of any tests done outside of MSK, such as a cardiac stress test, echocardiogram (echo), or carotid Doppler study.
    • The name(s) and telephone number(s) of your doctor(s).
  • If your procedure will be done in the endoscopy suite, a nurse will call you 3 days before your procedure.

     

    The nurse will confirm the type of procedure(s) you’re having and review the instructions in this resource with you. They will also ask you questions about your medical history and all medications you’re taking. They will talk with you about which medications you should take the morning of your procedure.

Arrange for someone to take you home

You must have someone 18 years or older take you home after your procedure. If you don’t have someone to do this, call one of the agencies below. They will send someone to go home with you. There’s usually a charge for this service, and you will need to provide transportation.

Agencies in New York                                         Agencies in New Jersey
Partners in Care: 888-735-8913                                         Caring People: 877-227-4649
Caring People: 877-227-4649                                          

 

Tell us if you’re sick

If you develop any illness (such as a fever, cold, sore throat, or the flu) before your procedure, please call your doctor who scheduled the procedure. After 5:00 pm, during the weekend, and on holidays, call 212-639-2000 and ask for the fellow on call for the Pulmonary Service.

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The Day Before Your Procedure

Note the time of your procedure

A clerk from the Admitting Office will call you after 2:00 pm the day before your procedure. If your procedure is scheduled on a Monday, you will be called on the Friday before.

The clerk will tell you what time you should arrive at the hospital for your procedure. They will also tell you where to go on the day of your procedure. This will be one of the locations below.

 
  • Operating room
    1275 York Avenue
    (between East 67th and East 68th Streets)
    B elevator to the Presurgical Center (PSC) on the 6th floor
  • Endoscopy suite
    1275 York Avenue
    (between East 67th and East 68th Streets)
    M elevator to the 2nd floor

If you don’t receive a call by 7:00 pm, please call 212-639-5014.

Instructions for eating and drinking before your procedure

12 ounces of water

  • Do not eat anything after midnight the night before your procedure. This includes hard candy and gum.
  • Between midnight and up until 2 hours before your scheduled arrival time, you may drink a total of 12 ounces of water (see figure).
  • Starting 2 hours before your scheduled arrival time, do not eat or drink anything. This includes water.
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The Day of Your Procedure

Things to remember

  • Take only the medications you were instructed to take the morning of your procedure. Take them with a few sips of water.
  • Don’t put on any lotion, cream, powder, deodorant, makeup, perfume, or cologne.
  • Remove any jewelry, including body piercings.
  • Leave valuables, such as credit cards and jewelry, at home.
  • If you wear contact lenses, wear your glasses instead.
 

What to bring with you

  • A list of all the medications you take.
  • Medications for breathing problems (such as inhalers), if you take any.
  • Medications for chest pain, if you take any.
  • A case for your glasses or contacts.
  • Your Health Care Proxy form, if you have completed one.
  • Your breathing machine for sleep apnea (such as a CPAP), if you have one.

Where to park

Parking at MSK's Memorial Hospital

MSK’s parking garage is located on East 66th Street between York and First Avenues. If you have questions about prices, call 212- 639-2338.

To reach the garage, turn onto East 66th Street from York Avenue. The garage is located about a quarter of a block in from York Avenue, on the right-hand (north) side of the street. There is a pedestrian tunnel that you can walk through that connects the garage to the hospital.

There are also other garages located on East 69th Street between First and Second Avenues, East 67th Street between York and First Avenues, and East 65th Street between First and Second Avenues.

What to expect

Once you’re in the hospital, you will be asked to state and spell your name and date of birth many times. This is for your safety. People with the same or similar names may be having procedures on the same day.

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After Your Procedure

If fluid was drained from your chest during your procedure, you will have a follow-up appointment in the Pleural Disease Clinic about 2 to 4 weeks after your procedure.

Your appointment will be with one of the interventional pulmonology advanced practice providers (APPs), which include NPs and physician assistants (PAs). APPs are medical professionals who work closely with your doctor.

If you have any questions about your follow up-appointment in the Pleural Disease Clinic, call 212-639-6283.

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Contact Information

If you have any questions or concerns, please call Interventional Pulmonology at 212-639-LUNG (212-639-5864). If you had fluid drained from your chest, call the Pleural Disease Clinic at 212-639-6283. You can reach a staff member Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.

After 5:00 pm, during the weekend, and on holidays, please call 212-639-2000 and ask for the fellow on call for the Pulmonary Service.

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