Before surgery at Children's at Lexington, eating and drinking are not allowed for certain periods of time. Follow these instructions carefully to prepare your child for surgery. If your child eats or drinks after the indicated time, the surgery may be canceled. Note: No food or drink is allowed in Pre-Op areas.
Specific instructions for children having day surgery at Children's at Lexington:
- Before the surgery: Do no eat any solid foods after midnight, including: candy, gum, non-human milk (cow, soy, rice, etc.), thickened formulas including commercial ones such as AR (which is added rice).
- 6 hours before surgery/procedure: stop drinking formula and fortified breast milk. Children over the age of 12 months must stop formula 8 hours before surgery/procedure.
- 4 hours before surgery/procedure: stop drinking breast milk
- 2 hours before surgery/procedure: stop drinking clear liquids
- G-tube formula feeding: should be stopped by midnight. (Children under 1 year of age may continue G-tube formula until 6 hours prior to surgery/procedure)
- Clear liquids include: water apple juice, Pedialyte. No carbonated beverages should be consumed during the 8 hour pre-surgery/procedure period.
Also, your child must remove all jewelry (including navel or other body piercings), nail polish, acrylic nails and contact lenses before coming to the hospital. Please leave all valuables at home.
Preparing your child for surgery
The Day Surgery staff can arrange an individual meeting with your family upon request.
For surgeries taking place at Boston Children's Hospital at Lexington, call 781-672-2300 to make arrangements.
Call your child's doctor or the appropriate Day surgery number if:
- your child has a cough, chest cold, sore or strep throat, nasal discharge (runny nose), conjunctivitis or has recently been exposed to the chicken pox;
- has any history of croup, pneumonia or mononucleosis (mono) within last six months; or
- has a history or family history of bleeding or frequent nosebleeds.
What to bring the day of surgery
- Your child's insurance information, including authorization numbers.
- All of your child's medication bottles, and/or pharmacy receipts, so medication doses can be verified.
- A written list of any questions you and your child may have.
- Your child's special blanket, stuffed animal or small toy.
- A CD player/iPod with headphones if your child is having local anesthesia. He or she may be able to use them.
- Two adults may be with your child in the Preoperative area and Recovery Room; however, please do not bring brothers or sisters, or additional people such as grandparents or friends.
- A copy of court papers regarding legal guardianship, if this applies:
- The phone number of the legal guardian or social worker if you are not the legal guardian.
- No cell phones or laptops in Pre-op or PACU areas.
Day before surgery
Lexington: A nurse will call you before 2 p.m. to confirm the time of surgery. The nurse will review information with you and answer any questions you may have. If you do not receive a call by 2 p.m. the day before your surgery, please call a member of the Day Surgery staff at 781-672-2300 between 2 and 3 p.m.
When to arrive at Day Surgery
Please arrive at least one hour before the scheduled surgery time. This allows time to register and perform necessary assessments. If your child is scheduled for surgery at 8:30 a.m., please arrive at 7:30 a.m.
Parking at Children's at Lexington is free.
The Day Surgery Unit is located on the first floor. The entrance can be found on your left-hand side after the last set of double doors.
Consent for surgery
Surgery cannot take place unless consent forms are signed. A parent or legal guardian must sign consent forms for surgery for children under age 18. Patients 18 years or older can consent to their own care.
If a patient age 18 or older is unable to give consent for treatment and/or surgery, the legal guardian must sign. For example, those who are incompetent or have developmental delays are often unable to give informed consent. If your child is 18 years or older and you are his or her legal guardian, please bring the legal documentation.
All female children age 12 and older will be tested for pregnancy.
The surgeon will meet with you in the Family Waiting Room. The nurse will take you to your child's bedside when your child is settled in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (recovery room).
Most children stay in the recovery room for 30 minutes or up to two hours after surgery. Some stays are longer, depending on the surgery and the patient's diagnosis.
Your child's nurse will teach you what you need to know to care for your child at home, answer any questions you may have and give you written instructions. You may take your child home when he or she is ready and you have learned the care required.
Please make sure all transportation arrangements are made for discharge following surgery. Be aware that public transportation is not an option after receiving anesthesia or sedation.
The morning or afternoon after surgery, a Recovery Room nurse will call you to see how your child is doing.