PATIENT GUIDE

 

PREPARING FOR SURGERY

 

Verify the date and time of the appointment.

The time you should arrive at the office for your appointment is different than your scheduled appointment time. You may be required to complete new patient paperwork or provide personal identification and insurance information prior to being seen by your doctor.

 

Because of this, you may be asked to arrive up to 30 minutes prior to your appointment time. Please confirm your expected arrival time when scheduling the appointment.

 

  • Print and complete the new patient forms 

  • Know the address and location of your appointment

  • Make sure you confirm the office location prior to leaving for your appointment.

  • Be aware of travel issues and delays

  • Become aware of any driving conditions, road construction detours, and/or parking requirements and locations that may present a delay in your arrival, and plan accordingly. 

 

ITEMS TO BRING TO YOUR APPOINTMENT

 

The following information is intended to assist you in determining the items to bring with you to your appointment.

 

Identification and Insurance Information: 

 

  • Current photo ID

  • Current insurance card(s)

  • Insurance co-payment, co-insurance, and/or deductible information, if applicable

  • Insurance referral, if applicable*

   

*Please verify that our office has received the referral prior to your appointment. Having a copy of your insurance referral is recommended.

 

Medical Information for Current Injury or Condition

 

All medical records, imaging (X-ray, MRI), and lab test results for your current injury or condition should be carried in or faxed from your primary care provider. If you have been evaluated or treated for your current injury or condition by another healthcare provider, please contact their office at least one week prior to your appointment, if possible, to request a copy of all medical records pertaining to your injury or condition. You can request that your records be sent directly to our office, but please confirm that we have received them prior to your appointment.

 

Personal Documentation of Current Injury or Condition

 

Throughout your visit, you will be asked questions about the injury or condition that you are being seen for. You may find that compiling a personal documentation record prior to your visit and having the record with you during your appointment may assist you in answering some of these questions.

 

Please note that the information in your personal document will not be used as a substitute for any official forms you will be asked to complete prior to your appointment. Click here to view sample information that you may want to include in your personal injury or condition documentation.

 

Current List of All Medications You Are Taking

 

Bring a current list of all your medications, including the name of the medication, dosage, the frequency you take the medication, and the reason for the medication. This list should include prescribed medications, herbal supplements, vitamins, and over-the­ counter medications you are taking as well as any medications you are allergic to. We recommend having this record with you as you may need to access this information during your appointment.

 

Medical History

 

Maintenance of your medical history, including all prior treatments, surgeries, conditions, and illnesses, even if they are not related to your current injury or condition, is always recommended. Have this record with you as you may need to access this information during your appointment.

 

List of Questions and Concerns to Address During Your Appointment and Notepad and Pen/Pencil for Notes

 

Take notes on what the office staff and medical staff discuss with you. Be sure to ask questions if you do not understand a policy, procedure, medical term, or the reason for your doctor's diagnosis, treatment plan, recommendations, medication instructions, or post-appointment instructions. If you need additional information to take with you, ask your doctor for handouts, brochures, or online resources that you can review at home.

 

Emergency Contact Information

 

An emergency contact list is a document you should have ready and keep updated regularly. Having this list with you at your appointment may provide you information you need in completing the required paperwork.

 

A Family Member or Friend

 

You may consider asking another adult to accompany you to your appointment. Should you need a translator, please let us know before your appointment and will provide one. We do not recommend that you rely on a child to translate.  

 

 

PREPARING FOR SURGERY (0 to 7 Hours Before My Surgery)

 

Food & Drink

 

Please do not consume food or liquids after midnight on the evening prior to your surgery date due to complications associated with anesthesia. This includes mints and chewing gum. Additionally, we recommend that you do not smoke, chew tobacco, or consume alcohol for at least 24 hours prior to your surgery.

 

Presurgery Hygiene & Dress 

 

  • You may brush your teeth the night prior to surgery, but remember not to swallow liquids after midnight.

  • Jewelry, watches, and body piercings should not be worn on the day of surgery. Do not bring valuables with you. You may wear dentures and glasses. However, it is recommended that you bring the cases to place them in during surgery. If you wear contacts, they will need to be removed, so bring your solution and a case with you.

  • Please wear comfortable, loose clothing, appropriate for the procedure being performed, such as a button front blouse/shirt for shoulder surgery. 

  • Please bring flat sole, slip-on walking shoes.

  • Please bring extra undergarments and/or diapers for young children having surgery. If they are taking a bottle, bring an empty bottle as well as a bottle with their usual formula or milk. You may bring their favorite toy or blanket as well.
    If you have been provided with any medical equipment prior to your surgery date, such as slings, crutches, postoperative shoes, or walkers, please present them at check-in. You may also want to bring pillows and blankets for your trip home

 

Medications and Testing

 

Please stop taking all herbal remedies, aspirin, and anti-inflammatory medications {Advil, Aleve, Ibuprofen, Motrin, Naproxen, etc.) seven days prior to surgery unless otherwise instructed. However, it is okay to take Tylenol (acetaminophen) if something is needed for pain. 

 

  • If you are currently taking a prescription blood thinner (Coumadin, Plavix, etc.) on a regular basis for heart problems or stroke, please call your surgeon's office immediately for further instructions.     You may take your usual morning blood pressure, heart, acid reflux, and/or seizure medications on the morning of surgery with a sip of water.

  • Do not take any diabetic medicine the day of surgery. However, please make sure to bring your diabetic medication with you. 

  • Please provide an accurate list of daily medications when they are reviewing your health history. Continue to take all prescription medications as normal unless informed otherwise by the nursing staff. You will be instructed on which medications to take the day of the procedure.

  • If you experience any health changes, such as an elevated temperature, cold, cough, or other health-related problems, please notify your doctor immediately. 

 

Transportation

 

As a reminder, you, the patient, will not be permitted to drive a car or leave the surgery center or hospital unattended after surgery. It is necessary to make arrangements for a responsible adult or caregiver to drive you home and stay with you for 24 hours following surgery. 

 

Additional Preparations

 

Below is a short list of additional information to help you prepare for your orthopaedic appointment.

 

Dress Comfortably

 

We recommend that you dress in comfortable clothing appropriate for your appointment. If your injury or condition involves your neck, back, spine, shoulder, or hip, you may be asked to change into a medical robe for your examination. We recommend wearing loose clothing that is easy to take off and put on.

 

In addition, your doctor may request an X-ray during your visit. Prior to your X-ray, you may be asked to remove jewelry, eyeglasses, and any other metal objects, such as loose change, hearing aids, underwire bras, fingernail clippers, etc., that may interfere with the imaging. Depending on the area of the body that is being X-rayed, you may be asked to change into a medical gown.

 

Expect Wait Times

 

Personalized care doesn't always follow definitive time schedules, and we appreciate your understanding and patience if we keep you waiting longer than you expected. In some cases, patients require special attention, or your provider may be asked to assess a serious injury. Be assured that your doctor will make every effort to see you as soon as possible.

 

Physician Assistants

 

There may be instances when you are seen by one of our physician assistants. At Vail­Summit Orthopaedics, our physician assistants (PAs) work closely with our orthopaedic doctors to provide the highest level of surgical and nonsurgical care for patients. Physician assistants are highly trained and qualified healthcare providers who work under the supervision of our orthopaedic doctors to take medical histories, conduct exams, diagnose and treat bone, joint, and muscle injuries and conditions, order and interpret tests such as X-rays and MRI, prescribe medications, and assist our doctors during surgery. Our PAs are trained to recognize when patients need the attention of a supervising doctor or additional specialist.