Before Your Day Surgery

It is important that you follow these guidelines in preparation for your day surgery:

On the Business Day before Surgery

  • Please confirm your arrival time and surgery time by calling (617) 732-7324 between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. If you are scheduled for surgery on a Tuesday after a Monday holiday, please call to confirm your times on Friday.

On the Night before Surgery

  • Do not eat anything after midnight or your surgery will be cancelled. This includes candy, gum, vitamins, etc.
  • You are allowed to drink water up to four hours before your scheduled time of surgery, unless instructed otherwise. If you continue to drink after that time, your surgery will be cancelled. The only exception is if your doctor instructs you to take any medication with a small amount of water.

On the Day of Surgery

  • You may brush your teeth or use mouthwash, but be careful not to swallow any toothpaste or mouthwash.
  • Do not eat anything. Unless instructed otherwise, you may drink water up to four hours before your scheduled time of surgery.
  • Please be sure to remove all jewelry before coming to the hospital.
  • Do not smoke.
  • You must have a responsible adult escort you home if you are having any type of sedation or anesthesia. Your surgery will be cancelled if you do not have an escort home. If there is an exception to this, you will be notified by your surgeon or nurse.

What to Bring For Your Day Surgery

To avoid losing any important belongings, please bring only the essentials, such as:

Important Points

  • The hospital cannot be responsible for your personal belongings.
  • Please label eyeglasses, hearing aid cases or similar items with your name.
  • It is important that you leave large amounts of cash, all jewelry, all charge cards, checkbooks, personal papers and other personal valuables at home.
  • Bring only the medications that your doctor instructs you to bring.
  • Read about BWH Improvements to the Surgical Journery.

For more information, download our Guide to Your Day Surgery.

Financial Arrangements

The staff at the Sharf Admitting Center will routinely confirm your insurance coverage and financial arrangements for your hospital stay in advance of your admission. For more information about financial arrangements, visit our Billing and Insurance section.


For over a century, a leader in patient care, medical education and research, with expertise in virtually every specialty of medicine and surgery.

About BWH