All patients 40 years old and older are required to have cardiac clearance by their physicians prior to surgery at the NIH.
All pheo/para patients must be "blocked" prior to having surgery at the NIH for a minimum of two weeks. This blockade is a combination of blood pressure medications that will be given to you here, at the NIH. You will need to be closely monitored and your blood pressures must be taken four times a day, every day. This information needs to be sent to Karen Adams once a day in order to ensure the titration of proper medications and a successful procedure.
Preparing for Your Surgery Visit
Surgical patients are admitted as inpatients, so surgical patients must go to the Admissions Office upon arrival for inpatient admission, as listed on your calendar. All patients, regardless of prior visit history or surgical history, must go to the Admissions Office for inpatient registration, before proceeding to the inpatient unit (5 North West for adult patients, 1 North West for pediatric patients).
All surgical patients will need to have an EKG, chest X-ray, and pre-anesthesia consult before surgery. These will be listed on your schedule. EKGs are done at the heart station on the first floor, and chest x-rays are done at radiology. No appointments are needed for these tests. The time of the pre-anesthesia consult will be listed on your schedule; this is done on the 2nd floor, outside the OR.
While you will be required to wear a hospital gown during surgery, please bring comfortable clothes to wear around the hospital after surgery.
Recovery times from surgery can vary from patient to patient, based on the type of surgery. In most cases, a room will be reserved for you and a guest at the Family Lodge for the duration of your inpatient visit. During recovery, the doctors may release you "on pass" to stay in the Family Lodge for the night. Patients are typically discharged several days to one week after surgery. You may only stay in the Family Lodge for 24 hours post-discharge; if you would like to spend additional time in the area before traveling home, you will be responsible for your own hotel room. It may take up to several weeks after discharge before you are ready to resume normal activities or return to work.
Surgery patients are typically scheduled for follow-up visits at the NIH 6-8 weeks after surgery.
Please see our Frequently Asked Questions for more information about surgery.