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    How To Prepare continued...

    Also, certain conditions may make it harder to do this test. Let your doctor know if you have:

    • Had this test or open-heart surgery in the past. The scarring from the first procedure may make it hard to do a second one.
    • A history of neck problems or a neck injury, especially anything that may have caused your neck muscles to stretch too much, like whiplash.
    • Any problems in your chest, including those you've had since birth.
    • Had radiation treatment to the neck or chest.

    You will get general anesthesia and be asleep during the test. To prepare for this test:

    • Your doctor will tell you how soon to stop eating and drinking before the test. The surgery may be canceled if you don't follow these instructions. If your doctor has told you to take your medicines on the day of surgery, take them with only a sip of water.
    • Leave your jewelry at home. Any jewelry you wear will need to be removed before the test.
    • Remove glasses, contact lenses, and dentures or a removable bridge just before the test. These will be given back to you as soon as you wake up after the test.
    • Arrange to have someone drive you home if you don't need to stay in the hospital.

    Your doctor may order certain blood tests, such as a complete blood count or clotting factors, before your test.

    How It Is Done

    Mediastinoscopy is done by a chest (thoracic) surgeon.

    Before the surgery, an intravenous (IV) line will be placed in a vein to give you fluids and medicines. After you are asleep, a tube will be placed in your throat to help you breathe.

    The doctor will make an incision just above your breastbone at the base of your neck or on the left side of your chest near the breastbone. The scope will be inserted through the opening. Your doctor will look at the space in your chest between your lungs and heart. Lymph nodes or abnormal tissue will be collected for testing. After the scope is taken out, the incision will be closed with a few stitches and covered with a bandage.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: August 21, 2015
    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.

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