Prior to surgery, you will have to see your primary care physician to be cleared for surgery. This will include recent blood work and an EKG. If you have heart or lung disease, you may be required to obtain other tests before surgery in order to ensure that you are in the best possible shape to undergo surgery. Finally, you will have to have a CT scan of the abdomen before surgery in order to help your plastic surgeon precisely plan the surgery.
Tell your plastic surgeon about all your medical problems and what medications you take (prescription, non-prescription, and herbal remedies). If you take blood thinners such as Plavix or Coumadin, these usually must be stopped before surgery. Your plastic surgeon will tell you how many days before surgery to stop taking them. Over the counter medications such as ibuprofen, Alleve, and aspirin must also be stopped- at least 7 days before surgery. Make sure to discuss any previous surgeries and to obtain the operative reports of all abdominal surgery or hernia repair you have undergone. If you smoke, you are at an increased risk of developing a complication from surgery. You will be required to quit for 6 weeks before and 6 weeks after surgery.
Depending on the size and nature of your hernia, you may be required to undergo a "bowel prep" before surgery. This is very similar to the bowel prep done before a colonoscopy. This means taking a laxative prescribed by your surgeon that will help clean out your intestines prior to surgery. Finally, be sure to follow all the instructions given to you the day before surgery. This includes not eating or drinking anything after midnight. If you get sick and have to cancel your surgery for any reason, please notify our office as soon as possible.