Health Information

Surgical Care

  • After Surgery: Discomforts and Complications

    Detailed information on postoperative discomforts and potential complications, including shock, hemorrhage, wound infection, deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary complications, urinary retention, and reaction to anesthesia

  • Types of Anesthesia and Your Anesthesiologist

    During surgery, you will be given some form of anesthesia—medication administered for the relief of pain and sensation during surgery. The type and dosage of anesthesia is determined by the anesthesiologist.

  • Common Surgeries

    Here are descriptions of the most common surgeries done in the U.S.

  • Checklist for Surgery/Consent Forms/Insurance Information

    The decision to have surgery is an important one. Here is a checklist to help you prepare. You'll need to arrange a time for any preoperative lab tests and for an interview with the anesthesiologist. Check with your health plan regarding costs and coverage of the surgery.

  • Surgery Overview

    Detailed information on surgery, the different types of surgery, the surgical setting, and the purpose of surgery

  • Discharge Planning After Surgery

    Once you leave the recovery room, you may be released to go home, or you may be moved to a hospital room. Here are questions to ask your doctor.

  • Postoperative Management

    Detailed information on postoperative management

  • Preoperative Management

    Detailed information on preoperative management

  • Home Page - Surgical Care

    Detailed information on surgery, including surgery statistics, surgery questions, preoperative management, intraoperative management, and postoperative management

  • Preparing for Surgery: The Operating Room

    Detailed information on the day of surgery and what to expect in the operating room

  • Methods of Surgery

    Minimally invasive surgery is a relatively new approach that allows the patient to recuperate faster with less pain. Not all conditions are suitable for this type of surgery.

  • Online Resources - Surgical Care

    List of online resources to find additional information on surgery

  • Intraoperative Care

    Detailed information on intraoperative management

  • Outpatient Surgery

    Detailed information on outpatient surgery

  • Pain Management

    It's normal to expect a certain amount of pain after surgery, but if the pain does not subside with pain medication, you may have a more serious problem. Your doctors and nurses will ask about your pain because they want you to be comfortable.

  • Recovering from Surgery/Intensive Care

    Detailed information on recovering from surgery and intensive care

  • Purpose of Having Surgery

    Surgery may be recommended for a variety of reasons—among them, to help with a diagnosis, to take a biopsy of a suspicious lump, to remove diseased tissues or organs, or to remove an obstruction.

  • Questions to Ask Before Surgery

    It's important to communicate your feelings, questions, and concerns with your healthcare provider before having surgery. Take notes, or ask a family member or friend to accompany you and take notes for you.

  • The Surgical Setting

    Detailed information on the surgical setting and the choices that may be available to the patient, including outpatient surgery, inpatient surgery, ambulatory surgery, and specialty surgery centers

  • Topic Index - Surgical Care

    Detailed information on surgery, including surgery statistics, surgery questions, preoperative management, intraoperative management, and postoperative management

  • Surgical Team

    The surgical team is made up of a surgeon, an anesthesiologist, a certified registered nurse anesthetist, and an operating room nurse.

  • Other Techniques of Surgery

    Laser surgery and electrosurgery are two alternative techniques that a surgeon may use in some cases.

  • Tests Done Before Surgery

    Many surgeons order routine lab tests before surgery. These tests help find possible problems that might complicate surgery if not found and treated early.

  • Types of Surgery

    As part of your diagnosis, you and your doctor may discuss surgery as a way to correct your condition.

  • Preparing for Surgery

    How should you prepare for surgery? That depends on the type of surgery and type of anesthesia that will be used.

  • How Wounds Heal

    Wound healing sounds simple, but it's actually quite complicated and involves a long series of chemical signals. Certain factors can slow or prevent healing entirely.

  • Surgical Site Infections

    Your skin is a natural barrier against infection, so any surgery that causes a break in the skin can lead to an infection. Doctors call these infections surgical site infections because they occur on the part of the body where the surgery took place.

  • Intra-Abdominal Abscess

    An intra-abdominal abscess is a collection of pus or infected fluid that is surrounded by inflamed tissue inside the belly.

  • Specialized Types of Cancer Surgery

    Your medical team may recommend one of several different types of surgery as part of your cancer treatment. These types include cryosurgery, laser surgery, microsurgery, and electrosurgery.