After Your Surgery
After surgery, most patients are taken to the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU), where the nursing staff will make you comfortable and monitor your condition as you recover. If you require a higher-than-normal level of care after your surgery, you may be taken to an intensive care unit (ICU) directly from the operating room. Family members are generally not permitted to accompany adult patients into the recovery room (Post-Anesthesia Care Unit) areas. Exceptions are made for pediatric patients and patients with special needs, such as a translator. If you will be staying overnight in the Hospital, Family members and guests will be able to visit you in your hospital room during normal visiting hours. After you have been observed and recovered sufficiently, you will be transferred either to your regular hospital room (if you are staying overnight) or to an ambulatory discharge area in preparation for going home.
If you are an ambulatory surgery patient (going home the same day as surgery), you must have a responsible adult to accompany you home. New York State requires that every patient who has had anesthesia and/or sedation must be escorted home after ambulatory surgery. Because you may feel drowsy from even minor surgery and light sedation, it is also advisable for you to have someone help take care of you at home after ambulatory surgery. The Hospital can help you arrange a medical transport service home at your expense. If you will require Home Care services when you leave the hospital, please advise your doctor in advance.
If you have had sedation/anesthesia for your procedure, it may temporarily impair your judgment or sensory/motor skills. Therefore, it is recommended that you do not drive, operate heavy/dangerous machinery, or make important decisions for the rest of the day.
To make your after-surgery experience is as comfortable as possible, you will receive specific discharge instructions from your surgeon/proceduralist and a telephone number to call, should you have any questions. You may receive prescriptions from your doctor for pain or to prevent infections. You will also receive follow-up calls from your surgeon/proceduralist or nurse and from your anesthesiologist to monitor the progress of your recovery.