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Time for Surgery?

Time for Surgery?

Archbold offers surgical services that meet your needs from head to toe. Whether you require neurosurgery, joint replacement, weight loss surgery or another procedure, our surgeons have the training and experience to provide you with expert surgical care.

“Archbold Medical Center is a smaller system that’s very progressive, said Morgan Lane, MD, general surgeon with South Georgia Surgical Associates. “We offer top-notch, innovative surgeries – therapies that you would expect to be offered at a bigger academic hospital.”

Here’s what you can expect when you’re scheduled for surgery:

The Prep Phase

During the days leading up to your surgery, you will come to the hospital to fill out paperwork. You may undergo presurgery tests and screenings such as routine blood tests, X-rays, urine tests and electrocardiograms. A nurse will talk you through your procedure, and you may meet with an anesthesiologist. If you have questions about the procedure, this is the time to ask them.

The day before your procedure, we’ll call to confirm your appointment. Unless told otherwise, you shouldn’t eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery. You will also take medication as prescribed by your surgeon.

On the morning of surgery, bathe as instructed. Leave jewelry and other valuables at home. Wear loose-fitting clothing to the hospital and arrive early.

Once you check-in, a nurse will take your temperature, blood pressure and other measurements. The surgeon will likely meet with you prior to surgery, and your surgical team will prep you for your procedure. Inside the operating room (OR), techs will set out sterile tools, and your anesthesiologist will ensure medication and oxygen are available and all tools are in good working order.

During the Procedure

“Inside the OR, surgery is similar to what you might see on TV,” Dr. Lane said.

First, you’re prepped for surgery and given anesthesia. When anesthesia has its desired effect, surgery will begin.

During many of Dr. Lane’s procedures, she will be in the OR with the patient and three other people: a physician assistant (PA), surgical tech and anesthesiologist. Complicated surgeries, such as joint replacement, may have a larger team. No matter how many people are present, everyone has a specific job.

The surgeon will perform the surgery. The PA will assist, acting as extra hands during the procedure, and the surgical tech will pass instruments and offer assistance in other ways if needed. During this time, the anesthesiologist will focus on keeping you asleep and/or comfortable.

While most procedures go as planned, the unexpected does sometimes occur. Fortunately, Archbold surgeons have the training and experience to adjust mid-surgery for a good outcome. When the surgery is complete, the surgeon will close your incisions, and you will be taken to recovery.

After the Surgery

Your first stop in recovery is the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU). There, staff will watch your vital signs and monitor your breathing. As anesthesia wears off, pain medication helps keep you comfortable.

Depending on the anesthesia used, you will spend 30 minutes to an hour in the PACU. You will then be transferred to another room. After major surgery, you may get admitted to a room inside the hospital. If you have had an outpatient surgery, you will be sent to a recovery room.

Hours or days later, you will be discharged and have at least one follow-up appointment. This will allow your surgeon or another provider to make sure you’re healing and recovering properly. There may be pain after the procedure, so working closely with your doctor to design an effective pain management plan is important.

“Surgery is typically reserved as a last resort,” Dr. Lane said. “If you’re at the point that you need surgery, you have a serious problem that needs to be fixed. That’s what we do.”

Heading Home

Your surgical experience doesn’t end when you leave the hospital. You will still need to take steps to protect yourself and recover fully.

That’s where discharge instructions come in. Discharge instructions explain how to care for yourself after returning home from surgery. Your instructions will vary based on the specific surgery you had.

Your discharge instructions may include information about:

  • Activities you should avoid and for how long
  • Follow-up appointments with your provider
  • Signs of infection or other complications to watch for
  • Type, dose and purpose of medication you should take as you heal
  • When it is safe to return to work, start exercising and take a shower or bath
  • When to remove bandages over your incision(s)

By following these instructions, your recovery will go more smoothly.

Learn more about Archbold surgeons and procedures available at