Prepare for heart surgery?
Stop Smoking – if you are still smoking before your heart surgery your risk of a chest infection after your operation is increased. if you stop smoking before your operation, your long-term recovery will also be improved. If you require help with stopping smoking please discuss with your GP practice nurse.
Lose Weight – If you have been advised by your surgeon to lose weight before the operation and need support, discuss this with your GP or practice nurse.
This is a day spent at King’s about four weeks before your operation. The morning will be led by the cardiothoracic nurse specialist; the procedure and recovery will be discussed. You will get to meet a patient who has recently had surgery and will answer any questions you may have. You will be able to give further information about your admission.
During the afternoon you will have a chest x-ray, blood tests, a heart tracing (ECG), swabs taken for MRSA and will meet with a surgical doctor, the cardiothoracic nurse specialist and pharmacist.
By having the necessary tests the doctors will be able to check your fitness for the operation and whether anything needs addressing before your admission.
If you are having heart valve surgery it is important that you have had a dental check up within the past six months. Dental care for valve patients will be discussed in more detail later.
What to Bring?
Please try to bring only one bag with you. You will need flip flops, night dresses, dressing gown, toiletries, towels and underwear. It is advised that women bring a bra with them, which they can wear after their operation. Wearing a bra after your surgery will help to support your chest wound.
You will need a set of day clothes to go home in and when you are up and walking around you may prefer to be dressed in your own clothes.
Note: Please do not bring in valuables, jewellery or large sums of money. If this is not possible hand in any valuables to the nurse in charge on your arrival. They will be listed and locked in a safe and you will be given a receipt. We do not accept liability for the loss of items that are not handed in for safe keeping.