Skip to content

    Prevent Medical Errors

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Prevent Errors During Surgery

    Before you have surgery, be sure that you and all your doctors know what is going to happen. Ask about:

    • Your surgeon's experience. You may get better results if your surgeon has done a lot of operations.
    • When you'll have your surgery. Your surgical team may be more alert in the morning.
    • How to prepare for the surgery. Ask your doctor if you have to stop taking any medicines or stop eating or drinking before the surgery. Ask your surgeon to mark your skin in advance to point to the correct area for surgery. It's rare that surgery is done on the wrong part of the body, but it can happen.
    • What to do after surgery. Ask about medicines you may need after surgery and what you need to do at home. Ask about what you can or can't eat and how to take care of surgical cuts (incisions). Ask when you need to call for help.

    Be sure to tell your doctors:

    • Whether you have ever had a bad reaction to anesthesia. Anesthesia is the medicine you get before your surgery to make you sleep or feel relaxed and help with pain.
    • Whether you take any vitamins, supplements, or herbal remedies.
    • Whether you have an advance directive. If you don't have one, you may want to prepare one so your doctor knows your health care wishes.
    • If you get a cold, fever, flu, or other illness close to your surgery date.
    1

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: September 09, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    Next Article:

    Hot Topics

    WebMD Video: Now Playing

    Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

    Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

    Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

    Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

    disciplining a boy
    Types, symptoms, causes.
    fruit drinks
    Eat these to think better.
    Balding man in mirror
    Treatments & solutions.
    No gym workout
    Moves to help control blood sugar.
    Remember your finger
    Are you getting more forgetful?
    acupuncture needle on shoulder
    10 tips to look and feel good.
    Close up of eye
    12 reasons you're distracted.
    birth control pills
    Which kind is right for you?
    embarrassed woman
    Do you feel guilty after eating?
    woman biting a big ice cube
    Habits that wreck your teeth.
    pacemaker next to xray
    Treatment options.
    Pink badge on woman chest to support breat cancer
    Myths and facts.

    Women's Health Newsletter

    Find out what women really need.