McLaren Port Huron
Patient Guidelines For Surgery - Port Huron

Patient Guidelines for Surgery

We want our patients to feel as comfortable as possible before undergoing surgery at McLaren. Knowing the ins and outs of what to expect before, and after surgery is very important.

Before Surgery

Knowing what to expect about an upcoming surgery can provide comfort to both you and your family. To help in your preparation, we have outlined information that allows you to take care of some important items before you come to the hospital.

Pre-Admission Testing

If your physician has asked that you have lab tests and an EKG before your surgery, you can schedule that by calling 810-989-3270. Appointments are available Monday through Friday from 8 to 11 a.m. and 2 to 3 p.m. in the Wismer Lab at McLaren Port Huron.


Your surgeon's office will schedule your procedure with our scheduling staff. If necessary, they will contact you with any individualized information and instructions prior to your procedure. It is your responsibility to pre-authorize the procedure with the insurance company; check with your physician's office staff to see if they provide this service.


Step 1

  • Pre-register by calling (810) 989-3270 (Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. -- 7 p.m.)
  • Please have your insurance information available.

Step 2

  • You will receive a call from one of our pre-admission nurses.
  • Please have a list of all your medications available.
  • The nurse will review your health history, medication list, and give you instructions on your surgery/procedure.

Step 3

  • We will contact you the day before your scheduled procedure between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. (Monday - Friday) to verify when you should arrive at the hospital for your procedure.
  • If your surgery is scheduled on a Monday we will call you the Friday before.
  • Note: Your arrival time will be earlier than your scheduled procedure time in order to complete the necessary preparations for the procedure.

Open Heart Surgery Patients

Patient and Family Video Information

Watch the educational video(s) for your procedure.

- Understanding Angioplasty

- Understanding Congestive Heart Failure

- Understanding Coronary Bypass Surgery

- Understanding Carotid Endarterectomy

- Understanding Cardiac Catheterization

- Understanding Heart Valve Surgery

- Understanding Pacemakers

- Understanding Peripheral Bypass Surgery

- Understanding Heart Disease in Women

- Understanding How Your Heart Works

- Stroke Prevention and You

- Rehabilitation After a Stroke

Surgery preparation Instructions and information

Speak Up Video

speak-up video image
Speak up: When You're Having Surgery - Watch this video from the Joint Commission

Contact information

McLaren Port Huron
Surgical Services
Second Floor
1221 Pine Grove Avenue
Port Huron, MI 48060

Phone Numbers


Fact Sheets

Information about Advance Directives

Frequently asked questions when preparing for Surgery:

Smoking and Tobacco Cessation

Quitting smoking prior to surgery will decrease your likelihood of surgery-related complications; regardless of the type of procedure you have. It is especially important not to smoke on the day of your surgery.

The Michigan Tobacco Quit-Line, 1-800-QUIT-NOW, provides education, coaches, plans for quitting, nicotine replacement products for those who qualify and referrals to local resources to help you quit using tobacco. Other resources include the American Cancer Society, and the American Lung Association Freedom from Smoking program,

What about my medications?

General information is listed below. Your admission access nurse will direct you on what medications to take before your procedure.

  • Please leave your personal medications at home.
  • When approved by Admission Access Center nurse, take your heart, blood pressure, asthma, pain medication, anti-psychotic, and Parkinson's or seizure medications with a sip of water the morning of your procedure Diabetics will be instructed on dosages for insulin, or diabetic medication by the admission access center nurse.
  • Please bring a list of all medications (including herbal and over the counter medications) with you the day of your procedure so you can go over them with your Pre-op nurse.
  • You may use your asthma or other lung inhalers in the morning and be sure to bring them with you.
  • If you are on oxygen at home, bring it with you.
  • If you use CPAP at home, bring it with you.
  • Contact your physician for instructions if you take blood thinners, MAO inhibitors, or have taken diet pills (phen/fen or redux). Some medications need to be stopped a few days before the procedure.
  • If you take Coumadin, Plavix, Pletal, Lovenox, Effient, Trental, Persantine or Ticlid: Contact your cardiologist or physician that started you on this medication to determine when to stop taking prior to surgery/procedure.
  • Herbal Supplements that contain: Ephedra, St. John's Wort, Ginkgo Bioloba, Garlic, Ginseng, Vitamin E, Fish Oil, or Vitamins must be stopped one week prior to surgery or procedure.
  • Patients Scheduled for:
    • Cardioversion patients: CONTINUE coumadin as directed by your physician.
    • Electrophysiology Study (EPS) patients: STOP antiarrythmic medications as directed by your physician.

What if I feel ill before my procedure?

If you wake up ill the morning of your procedure, please call the McLaren Port Huron Pre-op area at (810) 989-3280 or (810) 989-3281, please leave voice message if there is no answer.

  • Fever
  • Sore throat
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Cough or congestion
  • Chicken Pox exposure/illness within two weeks of surgery
  • Any other problems that may interfere with your scheduled surgery

How should I get ready?

Shower or bathe and shampoo the night before and the morning of your surgery, with antibacterial soap before coming to the hospital - this helps to prevent infection. Click on the link below for more information on important showering instructions:

Make sure your hair is clean and dry prior to arriving. Avoid hairspray.

Wear loose clothing that is easy to get off and on, which will fit over extra padding such as a bandage/dressing.

Do not wear makeup, jewelry (including any body piercing) or metal hair accessories.

Do not bring other valuables.

Change linens on your bed the night prior to surgery so that you are sleeping on clean bedding, after your antibacterial showering. Do not apply lotions or powders.

What should I bring with me?

The following documents, if applicable: Photo ID (such as a driver's license), insurance card(s), Medicare and/or Medicaid cards, a completed Living Will (if you have one).

Cases for eyeglasses, contact lenses or hearing aids. We recommend these type of items be left with your family member/companion during the procedure.

If you are staying overnight in the hospital - bring a small bag with personal items only (toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, comb or brush, shaving kit, other toiletries).

Cash or a credit card for your co-pays (depending on your insurance) and filling any post-surgical prescriptions. Note: The cost of prescriptions cannot be added to your bill.

Should someone come with me?

  • Please have one responsible adult accompany you the day of your surgery/procedure.
  • Two visitors - family members or friends - are welcome, but no children under 12 years of age, for their safety and the safety of our compromised patients.
  • One family member/companion should stay within the facility during your stay to receive instructions from the surgical team.

Services Available

  • Internet Access is available in the Surgical Waiting Lounge, as well as reading material and TV.
  • The cafeteria is open for your family while they wait and family paging devices with in-house service are available for your convenience and peace of mind, should you decide to step away from the waiting area.
  • A parent or guardian of a patient under 18 must stay in the facility until the patient is discharged.
  • A responsible person must be prepared to drive you home. Driving yourself home is NOT permitted. If you do not have a responsible person to drive you home, your procedure will be cancelled.
  • A responsible adult should be prepared to care for you for the first 24 hours after your procedure.

Additional Resources

What surgery patients can typically expect on the day of surgery.

Surgical Patient "Welcome Letter"

General Information

  • Please do not bring children with you to the hospital, unless they are the patient, for their safety and the safety of our compromised patients.
  • No make-up, hairspray, jewelry (or any body piercing jewelry).
  • Glasses/contact lenses – bring carrying case
  • Dentures – do not use adhesives.
  • Leave valuables and jewelry at home.
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing appropriate for the procedure.
  • Shower or bathe the night before and morning of your surgery with antibacterial soap or Hibiclens. See the patient shower instructions and the Preventing Surgical Site Infections Fact Sheet above.
  • Please change bed linens prior to arriving home. Bring insurance, prescription cards, and photo ID.
  • If you wake up ill the morning of your procedure, please call the Preop area at (810)989-3280.
  • Female patients may be asked for a urine specimen upon arrival, if within childbearing age.

Reception and Admitting

  • When you arrive at McLaren Port Huron for your procedure, remember to check in at the Front Lobby Information Desk, they will direct you to the appropriate surgical registration desk.
  • You will be asked for your insurance card and picture id.
  • You will also be given an information packet if you have not viewed/printed from the website.
  • Wi-Fi is available in the lounge for your family during their wait.
  • Please read the following material:
    Note: Please take a moment to read the following links. These informational documents may help answer questions you may have or generate questions for the RNs taking care of you.
  • Discharge Instructions (dependent on your procedure and the surgeon's preference).
  • Nurses will ask you to rate your pain according to the numeric or picture scale. This scale will help nursing staff evaluate and manage your pain. If you have any questions, ask the pre-operative nurse prior to surgery.

Pre-Operative Area

  • This is a private bay where you will change into a hospital gown.
  • A registered nurse will perform an assessment, and you will be prepared for surgery. This will include: having vital signs and weight measured, starting an IV (intravenous) line, possible lab tests, possible urine sample, skin prep and marking of operative site, if necessary.
  • We will happily provide you a warm blanket. You may bring a book or magazine to read while you wait. We also have head phones for music devices, and some preop bays are equipped with a TV.
  • You will learn about your anesthesia; the medication that will help to keep you comfortable during your procedure. Anesthesia will be provided based on your surgery type and your health status.
  • All anesthesiologists are medical doctors with special training in the field of anesthesiology.
  • CRNAs (Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist) are advanced practice nurses specially trained in the field of anesthesiology.
  • There are three (3) different types of anesthesia that can be used:
    • General: You are totally asleep and aware of nothing.
    • Spinal/Epidural: Epidural anesthesia is a technique whereby a local anesthetic drug is injected through a catheter placed into the epidural space.
    • Local with sedation: You may receive relaxing medication as needed through an IV to keep you relaxed while your surgeon/anesthesia provider freezes the skin with medicine.
  • Your surgeon, anesthesiologist, and CRNA will visit with you in the preoperative area. Please feel free at this time to ask any questions regarding your procedure or anesthesia.
  • A nurse from the operating room will also visit you to verify your name, allergies, food intake status, and to identify the surgical site.
  • Waiting times before your procedure vary. We will make every effort to keep you informed and explain delays if they occur.
  • You will be transported to the operative area by a member of the surgical team.
  • Your family will be shown where to wait during your surgery. No family may be permitted in the operating room during the surgery.

Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU)

  • Your recovery begins with individual nursing care - including pain management.
  • The time spent in the Recovery Room may be more or less depending on your needs, the type of anesthesia and the procedure performed.
  • Family will not be able to visit in the Recovery Room.
  • Once you have met specific medical criteria, you will be discharged to the post-operative area.

Post-Operative Area

  • Recovery
    • You will be transferred to recovery area where you will be monitored closely. During this phase a registered nurse will:
    • Take vital signs.
    • Treat any nausea/vomiting.
    • Manage pain, if needed.
    • You will be offered a variety of snacks and drinks as you become more alert.
    • Your family will be able to visit you once you are awake.
    • Provide discharge education (both written and verbal) to you and to the person who is taking you home.
  • Prescriptions
    • Your physician will provide any discharge prescriptions necessary.
    • Have family or appropriate visitors fill these before leaving the facility, if you choose.
    • The hospital pharmacy accepts most insurance plans. Please remember to bring your prescription card with you.
  • Going Home
    • You will be observed and made comfortable until your doctor decides it is safe for you to go home.
    • The duration of this stage is dependent on your needs, type of anesthesia and the procedure performed.
    • A responsible/able person must drive you home. You are not permitted to drive yourself due to safety and legality rationale.
    • A staff member or a member of our volunteer staff will accompany you out of the building when you are discharged, by a wheelchair for your safety and comfort.

    After Surgery

    What to expect during the first few days after your surgery:

    • Patients who have received sedation or general anesthesia should not drive or operate a vehicle for 24 hours after the procedure.
    • Patients sometimes experience minor after-effects from anesthesia such as drowsiness, nausea, muscle aches, a sore throat and occasional dizziness or headaches.
    • These after-effects lessen rapidly in the hours following your procedure. The majority of patients do not feel up to their typical activities the next day, usually due to general tiredness or surgical discomfort.
    • Plan to take it easy for a few days until you feel back to normal. Know that a period of recovery at home is common and to be expected.
    • Call your doctor if you have questions about the operative site, what you can and cannot do, or when you can return to work.

    Patient Satisfaction

    Patient Satisfaction is not only an important factor in providing quality medical care, but is fundamental to the McLaren Port Huron mission. You may receive a patient satisfaction survey in the mail after you are discharged. We strive for 5's (Very Good) however, if we do not deserve a "5" please let us know; your opinions/comments are most welcome and help us improve our patient services.

    How to contact us after surgery

    Visiting Information

    Current Visitation Guidelines

    Frequently Asked Questions

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