On the day of surgery, you will meet with the medical team involved
in your surgery. This may include your surgeon, the anesthesiologist,
and various other healthcare professionals. During your procedure,
special care is taken by all members of the surgical team to ensure
that no complications arise.
Getting ready for surgery
You may expect some of the following to occur:
You may need to change into a hospital gown.
receive an identification bracelet.
An intravenous line may
be inserted in your forearm for anesthetics and other
You will be transported on a stretcher to the
The operating room can be an intimidating place, with a lot of
unfamiliar technical equipment. The following is a brief list of
equipment you may see in the operating room. However, each operating
room varies depending on the type of surgery being performed.
The operating table in the center of the room can be raised,
lowered, and tilted in any direction.
The operating lamp
allows for brilliant illumination without shadows during
You may be connected to various monitors that keep
track your vital signs, such as your heart rate and blood
A ventilator or breathing machine stands by the
head of the operating table. The ventilator will breathe for you
during the procedure by moving oxygen and air in and out of your
Sterile instruments to be used during surgery are
arranged on a stainless steel table.
A diathermy machine,
to control bleeding, usually is present.
If the surgery
requires it, a heart-lung machine, or other specialized equipment,
may be brought into the room.
New developments in the OR
Some of the latest advances available to patients during or after
surgery include the following:
Bispectral index (BIS) - a new monitoring system that monitors
the state of the brain in the intensive care unit, the operating room,
and for clinical research. The system analyzes the patient's brain
wave pattern and converts it into a "depth of sedation"
number allowing anesthesiologists to continuously monitor the state of
Scopolamine patch - a prescription drug that helps to prevent
nausea and vomiting associated with motion sickness, the scopolamine
patch has now been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration
(FDA) to prevent nausea and vomiting during or after surgery. The
small patch is placed behind the ear the night before surgery,
allowing medication to be absorbed through the skin and travel
directly into the bloodstream.
Remifentanil - an analgesic (pain reliever) for inducing and
maintaining general anesthesia during surgery. The drug safely breaks
down in the bloodstream and body tissues very quickly. However, unlike
other drugs, remifentanil is broken down by enzymes in the blood and
muscles, rather than in the liver and kidneys. This results in
patients waking sooner and having breathing tubes, often inserted
during surgery, removed sooner.
Fibrin sealants - the new class of blood-derived (made from
plasma) fibrin sealants helps to stop oozing from small blood vessels
during surgery when conventional surgical techniques are not feasible.
The sealants, which form a flexible material over the oozing blood
vessel, help control bleeding within minutes.
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Clinical trials are research studies that evaluate a new medical approach, device, drug, or other treatment. As a Stanford Health Care patient, you may have access to the latest, advanced clinical trials.
Open trials refer to studies currently accepting participants. Closed trials are not currently enrolling, but may open in the future.
Stanford Health Care (formerly Stanford Hospital & Clinics)
provides comprehensive services to refer and track patients, as well
as the latest information and news for physicians and office staff.
For help with all referral needs and questions, visit Referring Physicians.
HOW TO REFER
Fax a referral form with supporting documentation to
Track your patients' progress and communicate with Stanford providers