What to Expect

A hospital stay need not be a scary prospect. You can reduce your stress and discomfort by knowing what to expect before you arrive. To help you feel more prepared, we’ve compiled a list below of frequently asked questions about surgeries or hospital stays.

Please also feel free to contact us with any additional questions or suggestions. 

Getting ready for:

  • A hospital stay
  • Surgery
  • The day of surgery

Preparing for a hospital visit

Will I need to complete any additional paperwork when I check in?

Yes, you may need to fill out a few additional forms once you arrive at the Palm Beach Gardens’ admissions desk.

Some forms you might be asked to complete include:

  • Authorization to Release Protected Health Information
  • Conditions of Admission and Consent for Treatment
  • Acknowledgement of Receipt of Notice of Privacy Practices

Is pre-admission testing (PAT) required prior to my particular surgery?

You’re encouraged to complete pre-admission testing (PAT) two to 10 days before your surgery. Your physician will order specific tests based on the procedure, your age and medical condition. PAT typically take less than an hour and ensures you and your doctor are both prepared.

PAT tests may include:

Where should I check in?

Depending on the purpose for your appointment, your doctor will give you appropriate admission and check-in instructions.

How do I get to the facility?

You can find Maps & Directions here.

Preparing for surgery

Do I need to stop taking any certain medications before for surgery?

Consult your physician prior to surgery for directions.

What should I do if I get sick before surgery?

If you have a fever that lasts more than 24 hours, or if you’re experiencing flu-like symptoms, contact your doctor for recommendations.

Are there any food or drink restrictions I should follow before surgery?

  • Eat a light dinner the evening before surgery, and avoid all alcoholic beverages.
  • After midnight the night before your surgery, do not eat or drink anything—not even water, chewing gum or mints—unless otherwise directed by your doctor.

Will I be able to drive home after surgery?

No, you won’t be allowed to drive following surgery. Please make arrangements for a ride home with a responsible adult. You won’t be permitted to drive the day of surgery, and you’ll need your doctor’s clearance before driving again.

The day of surgery

On the actual day of my surgery, what time should I arrive at the hospital?

Please arrive at least two hours prior to your scheduled procedure, unless your physician provides other instructions.

Am I allowed to bathe, brush my teeth, or wear makeup or body piercings?

You may bathe or shower (with antibacterial soap) and brush your teeth before coming to the hospital, but do not drink any water. Please limit makeup and remove all body piercings or jewelry.

What happens after surgery? Will I be allowed to see family or friends?

After surgery, the time you spend in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) will depend on your procedure and how you respond to anesthesia. Visitors will be restricted during this time, but your nurse will keep them informed of your condition.

Who do I contact if I need to cancel my surgery?

If you need to cancel surgery, please notify your physician and the hospital’s scheduling department immediately.

Find out more about your current condition by exploring ​our Health Library.

If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact us.