St. James Surgery Center
PATIENT GUIDE TO EYE SURGERY AT ST. JAMES SURGERY CENTER
In today’s day and age, eye surgery has become safe, comfortable, and efficient. Through the use of the most modern techniques and equipment possible, your problem can be helped with little or no discomfort during or after your procedure. We know it’s comforting to be cared for by people you know and trust, and at St. James Surgery Center, you are being cared for by a family of experts.
We want you to have the best result possible. We will personally oversee the entire procedure. Because your comfort and vision are our top priorities, please tell us if there is anything we can do to make your visit more comfortable. We love to see happy patients, and we look forward to assisting you in every aspect of your total eye care. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
AFTER YOUR OFFICE EVALUATION, WHAT’S NEXT?
FOOD & BEVERAGE
If you are having surgery in the morning, you may have nothing to eat after midnight. You may have small sips of water and clear liquids, like apple juice, cranberry juice, black tea or coffee – no cream or milk. Do NOT drink pulpy juices, like orange juice or grapefruit juice.
If your surgery is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. or later, you may have clear liquids, as noted above, up to two hours before your afternoon arrival time.
Even though we will check with your insurance company to determine if you need to have prior authorization, a second opinion, or whether you have any significant deductibles or co-payments to pay, ultimately, you are responsible for any specific policies or penalties your insurance plan may have. You should double-check with your insurance company to see if your plan has any conditions you need to know about regarding ambulatory surgery.
- General Rule – You should take your medications as you normally do. If you are taking medications on a daily basis, continue to take them at your regular times. If you normally take your medications with food or orange juice, please contact us for guidance. As stated above, only clear liquids are permitted up to two hours before surgery.
- Diabetes – If you have diabetes, DO NOT take your oral diabetes medications on the day of surgery. If you take insulin to control your diabetes, please contact the surgical counselors or nursing staff for guidance. It is important to check your blood sugar level in the morning prior to arriving at St James Surgery Center.
Please be sure to inform our surgical coordinators of all medical conditions and medications you are taking.
We want you to be comfortable in the clothes you wear to the surgery center because you will be wearing them during the operation. Please wear freshly laundered clothing on the day of surgery. Feel free to be as casual as you want. Please wear a loose-fitting upper garment with either short sleeves or sleeves that can be rolled up easily. We will need access to your upper arm for a blood pressure cuff. Please do not wear eye or facial makeup, earrings, or nail polish.
THE DAY OF SURGERY – WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT?
Please come to our office at your scheduled time. This is your anticipated arrival time, not surgical time. If you are going to be late, please call the office and let us know so that the schedule can be adjusted to avoid delays for other patients having surgery that day. Please arrange to have a responsible adult drive you home after your surgery. You will not be permitted to drive yourself home. If you are unable to find a driver, please ask our surgical counselors for a list of approved medical transport service providers.
CHECK-IN AND CONSENT FORMS
Once you arrive at our facility, please check in with the receptionist. You will be asked to sign a couple of surgical consent forms. These forms permit us to do the operation. You will also be asked for your co-payment if you have one. We cannot proceed without it.
After all of your consent forms have been signed, you will be given several sets of eye drops. When your pupils have dilated sufficiently, you will be brought into our Surgical Preparation Area.
Our staff of highly trained nursing staff will bring you into the pre-operative area. Here, you will be comfortably seated while your blood pressure, pulse, and temperature are checked. The nurses will verify medical information contained within your surgical chart, and you may receive additional eye drops.
While comfortably waiting, you may see smiling patients returning from the operating room or having a snack before they leave.
Because the surgical team at the St. James Surgical Center is made up of highly trained specialists, there is no need to be nervous, and we will do our best to ease your mind. We want you to be as comfortable as possible. A Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist or CRNA, will interview you about your past medical history. The CRNA will start your IV and administer medication to help you relax. The CRNA will be with your during your procedure to monitor you and administer additional medication should you need it. You will be awake during your procedure, but very relaxed. Many patients do not remember anything from their time in the operating room.
Once the surgeon is ready for you, you will be led into the operating room. Do not touch anything on your way in because everything there is sterile. You will see a lot of sophisticated equipment designed to make your operation safe, comfortable, and efficient.
A blood pressure cuff will be attached to your arm, and a cardiac monitor will be attached to your wrists. A sensor will be placed on your finger to enable us to measure the oxygen level in your blood. The CRNA will remain by your side during your procedure. Your surgeon and his surgical team will be ready to begin your procedure.
The area around your eye will be washed with an antiseptic solution to sterilize the skin and surrounding tissue. Sterile drapes will cover your head and the area surrounding the eye. Your nose and mouth will not be covered. A special face guard will keep the drapes off of them so that you will be able to breathe comfortably.
Your surgeon will be using an operating microscope through which your eye will be magnified. You should remain quiet and as still as possible during the operation. Please follow any instructions the surgeon may ask of you, such as “look at the light.” If you need anything during the procedure, please let us know. The CRNA will be by your side.
When your surgery is completed, all the drapes and monitoring equipment will be removed. You will be brought to the post-operative area where your pulse and blood pressure will be monitored.
Refreshments will be given while you are in post-op, if you desire. Usually, within 10 – 15 minutes, you will be led out of the post-operative area and released into the care of the responsible adult who accompanied you to your surgery and who will drive you home.
AFTER SURGERY – WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT?
Once your operation is completed, you will need to carefully take care of your eye.
- Begin using your eye drops today (See your post operative eye drop instruction sheet)
- Wash your hands before using eye drops.
- Gently shake the bottle before instilling eye drops.
- Tilt your head back and look up.
- Gently pull down below your eyelid until a pocket forms between your eyelid and your eye.
- Try not to let the dropper touch your lids or lashes.
- Instill one drop of each medication. Repeat if you think you missed.
- Release your finger and gently close your eye.
- Wait 5 minutes between each drop.
- Do not rub your eye. It may be sensitive from the operation and may tear a bit. Instead of rubbing your eye, you may gently blot the tears on your cheek using a clean tissue.
- Your eye may feel scratchy, irritated, ache or burn. These sensations are normal.
- You may take Tylenol, Extra-Strength Tylenol, Ibuprofen or some similar aspirin-free pain reliever every 4 - 6 hours if you have minor pain or discomfort. You should not, however, have any significant pain. If you do, please call the office.
- Your vision may be blurry or hazy. This should improve over the next few days. If it does not, please contact our office.
- Your eye may remain dilated for 24-48 hours.
- A temporary redness of the white of your eye is normal.
- Your glasses prescription may change after surgery. Wearing your present prescription will not harm the eye, but you may feel more comfortable without your glasses.
- You may resume your normal routine. Walking, bending, light lifting will not harm the eye. Avoid activities that may risk getting dirt in your eye, such as gardening or lawn mowing for one week. Perspiration should be wiped off the forehead before it reaches your eye.
- No swimming or hot tubs for 2 weeks.
- You may watch television or read.
- You should continue taking all your regular medications.
- You may be light sensitive, whether you are inside or outside.
- You may take a shower, but avoid getting water in your eye for one week.
- No eye make up for one week. Please purchase new mascara and eye liner when you resume wearing eye make up.
- You may resume driving the day after your surgery if you feel confident with your vision and motor function, unless otherwise instructed by your doctor.
You will be scheduled to return to our office the first day following your surgery and then again 2 weeks after your surgery takes place. It is very important you keep these appointments so we can monitor the prognosis of your eye’s healing and your vision.
At your 2-week appointment, you will be evaluated to determine whether you need eyeglasses and to prescribe them if necessary. This appointment will be with your regular optometrist if you have one or with one of our doctors if you are a patient with Koch Eye Associates.
ST. JAMES SURGERY CENTER
444 Quaker Ln
Warwick, RI 02886
M - F 7:30am - 4:30pm