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Taking Medicine Before Surgery

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Certain medications can increase the risk of bleeding or other complications during anesthesia and surgery. It is important to know what medications you should avoid and which you can continue taking.

While you should avoid certain medications (listed below) before surgery, you can take most medicines including pain medication, beta-blockers and acid reduction medication, up until early in the morning on the day of surgery with a sip of water.
Discuss all your current medications with your doctor to make sure they will not put you at risk during your procedure.
Do NOT take the following medications:
  • MAO inhibitors (such as Nardil and Parnate) must be stopped two weeks prior to surgery. You must make your prescribing physician aware that you are stopping these medications for surgery.
  • Blood thinners (including aspirin, ibuprophen, Motrin, Plavix, NSAIDS) must be stopped one week prior to surgery, unless directed otherwise by your physician.
  • Ace Inhibitors (Lisinopril, Enalapril, etc.) and Diuretics (water pills) should not be taken the day of surgery.
Do NOT take:
  • Dietary supplements.
  • Herbal medication.
  • Pondamen.
  • Fastin.
For patients with diabetes:
  • You will be instructed on how to manage your diabetes medications during your pre-op phone call or Preadmission Testing visit. These instructions will cover the medication you should take the evening before and the day of surgery.