Ear Center: Preoperative Surgery Instructions for Adults & Children

We are pleased that you have chosen us to perform your surgery. In order to help you get ready for your procedure or your child's procedure, we have included preoperatively instructions for your to follow for some of our common procedures. Please click on the appropriate link to the left.

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Adults
Children

Standard preoperative instructions:

Adults

  1. Eating - You may eat and drink normally until 12 midnight the day before your operation. Do not eat or drink anything after 12 midnight. You may brush your teeth in the morning but spit out the water.
  2. Bathing - If you are scheduled to have an ear operation, please shampoo your hair and wash carefully behind your ears the evening before your operation. Use cotton with Vaseline to plug your ear canals so as not to get any water into your ear canals.
  3. Medications
    1. Aspirin: Do not take any aspirin, aspirin containing products, ibuprofen (Motrin), NSAID's (Aleve, etc), for 10 days prior to your operation. You may take Tylenol® containing products.Click HERE for a list of medications that should not be taken.
    2. Blood Thinners: If you are taking blood thinners of any kind (Coumadin, warfarin, etc.) and have not discussed them with your surgeon, please contact us immediately at (336) 273-9932.
    3. Stomach Medications: If you are taking medications to decrease stomach acid production or gastroesophageal reflux (Prevacid, Nexium, Zantac, Pepcid, etc.), you should take one pill with one teaspoon of water when you awaken in the morning of your operation before traveling to the surgical facility.
    4. Blood Pressure Pills: If you take blood pressure pills, you may take one pill with one teaspoon of water when you awaken.
    5. Asthma: If you have asthma, you may use two puffs of your asthma inhaler when you awaken.
    6. Diet Pills: Please tell your doctor and anesthesiologist if you are taking any type of diet pill. You must stop taking diet pills for two weeks prior to being put to sleep by general anesthesia. This is very important because diet pills deplete your body's natural catecholamines. If your catecholamines have been depleted, it may be very difficult for your anesthesiologist to increase your blood pressure during a general anesthetic. The inability to increase maintain or increase your blood pressure can lead to major complications and/or death during general anesthesia.
    7. Gum: Do not chew gum the morning of your operation. Chewing gum may lead to stomach acid secretion.
    8. Special Medications: If you are taking any special medications and have questions about whether you should take them when you awaken, please contact one of our nurses at (336) 273-9932.
    9. Acetaminophen (Tylenol®) may be used preoperatively and postoperatively for pain control and for treating fever. Please read the instructions packaged with all acetaminophen containing products and adhere to all recommendations and dosage specifications. To help prevent potential acetaminophen toxicity, especially in children, it is very important for children to receive the proper dose and to have subsequent doses given at the proper intervals. During some operations, acetaminophen (Ofirmev®) may be given intravenously. To help prevent potential toxicity, it is important that you or your child do not receive additional doses of acetaminophen for 6 hours after receiving Ofirmev®.

      Click here for a list of medications that contain acetaminophen.

Children

  1. Eating - Your child may eat and drink normally until 12 midnight the day before his/her operation.
  2. Children younger than 3 years of age: young children should not eat any solid food after midnight but may drink either water or apple juice between 12 midnight and 3:00am. They should not eat or drink anything after 3:00am. Although they may be fussy, do not feed them any food or liquid when they awaken in the morning or put anything in their mouths. If they eat or drink anything in the morning, the anesthesiologist will not put them to sleep, and the operation will be postponed to another day.
  3. Children 3 years or older: these children should not eat food or drink any liquid after 12 midnight. Although they may be fussy or complain verbally, do not feed them any food or liquid when they awaken in the morning, put anything in their mouths, or permit them to eat or drink. If they eat or drink anything in the morning, the anesthesiologist will not put them to sleep, and the operation will be postponed to another day.
  4. Bathing - If your child is scheduled to have an ear operation, please bath them, shampoo their hair, and wash carefully behind their ears the evening before their operation. Use cotton with Vaseline to plug their ear canals so as not to get any water into their ear canals.
  5. Medications
    1. Aspirin: Your child should not take any aspirin, aspirin containing products, children's Motrin (ibuprofen), for 10 days prior to their operation. In fact, children under 18 years of age should not take aspirin or aspirin containing products due to the possibility of triggering a severe condition called "Reyes Syndrome". It is safe for them to take Tylenol® containing products.
    2. Acetaminophen (Tylenol®) may be used preoperatively and postoperatively for pain control and for treating fever. Please read the instructions packaged with all acetaminophen containing products and adhere to all recommendations and dosage specifications. To help prevent potential acetaminophen toxicity, especially in children, it is very important for children to receive the proper dose and to have subsequent doses given at the proper intervals. During some operations, acetaminophen (Ofirmev®) may be given intravenously. To help prevent potential toxicity, it is important that you or your child do not receive additional doses of acetaminophen for 6 hours after receiving Ofirmev®.

      Click here for a list of medications that contain acetaminophen.

    3. Stomach Medications: If your child is taking medications to decrease stomach acid production or gastroesophageal reflux (Zantac, etc.), you should give them their usual dose with one teaspoon of water when they awaken in the morning of their operation before traveling to the surgical facility.
    4. Asthma: If your child has asthma, you may give them a home nebulizer treatment or have them use one puff of their asthma inhaler when they awaken. Bring all of their inhalers with you to the surgical facility.
    5. Gum: Children should not chew gum the morning of their operation. They should also not eat cheerios, gold fish or gummy bears.
    6. Special Medications: If your child is taking any special medication(s), and you have any questions or concerns about whether you should administer them when they awaken, please contact one of our nurses at (336) 273-9932.
    7. Anti-seizure Medications: Please tell your doctor and anesthesiologist if your child is taking any type of anti-seizure medication (anti-epileptics).

Click to download this page as a pdf and print.

Last revised October 17, 2014