Before the Day of Surgery


Your surgeon’s office will schedule your surgery at the ASCW for a specific date.

The ASCW will notify you one business day before your scheduled date of surgery to confirm the specific time for you to arrive at the Center and the specific time of your surgical procedure.

The Operating Room schedule is dynamic and every effort is made to accommodate each patient’s requests. However, please understand that certain patients (e.g., pediatric, elderly, those with multiple medical problems, specific case type) may take priority for the earlier time slots.

Please notify your surgeon if your condition changes before surgery (e.g., if you have a productive cough or fever).

Financial Obligation

After your case is scheduled at the ASCW, an ASCW financial coordinator will

  • contact your insurance company to verify your benefits and to obtain an estimate of reimbursement to the ASCW and an estimate of the amount you owe (deductible, coinsurance and/or copayment) to the ASCW.
  • contact you, the patient via telephone to review the information provided by your insurance company and confirm the amount of money (deductible, coinsurance and/or copayment) you must pay to the ASCW.

All payments made by personal check are due two weeks before date of surgery.

Payments greater than $500 that will be paid by cash, bank check or credit card must be paid at least 5 business days before the date of surgery.

Payments $500 or less that will be paid by cash, bank check or credit card may be paid upon registration on the day of surgery.

For your convenience, the ASCW accepts VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and your bank debit card.


The patient’s surgery may be canceled if the patient’s financial obligation (i.e., deductible, coinsurance and/or copayment) is not paid-in-full before the surgical procedure.

Preoperative Evaluation by the ASCW Preadmission Nurse

Each patient will be contacted by an ASCW Preadmission Nurse to review your medical history and the preoperative instructions. This usually takes 10-20 minutes over the telephone.

You may also contact the Preadmission Nurse at 914-244-6779 if you have specific questions in advance of the surgery.

Preoperative Evaluation by your Anesthesiologist

If you would like to speak to an anesthesiologist before your date of surgery, please call the Center to arrange either a telephone appointment or a visit to the Center. Our board certified anesthesiologists are happy to address any anesthetic concerns you may have.

Preoperative Evaluation by your Primary Care Physician

Depending on your health status, you may need to be evaluated by your Primary Care Physician or other specialist (e.g., cardiologist) and/or obtain certain laboratory tests (blood work, EKG or x-rays) before your surgery.

Preoperative evaluations and testing should be completed at least 5 days prior to your surgery to allow the results to reach us in a timely fashion. Your surgeon’s office will discuss this with you.

Arrange for a Responsible Adult to take care of You and your children.

Patients who receive sedation or general anesthesia must have a responsible adult (at least 18 years of age) to escort them home after surgery. It is strongly recommended that each patient have a responsible adult to remain with them for the first 24 hours after surgery. Postop complications are rare but they are more easily addressed if you have someone to assist you during your time of need.

Please do not bring any children other than the patient to the Center. Children who are not patients are not allowed in the clinical areas and childcare is not available. Parents are expected to be with pediatric patients before and after surgery.


The patient’s surgery may be canceled if the patient does not have a responsible adult to escort him/her home after receiving sedation or general anesthesia.

The responsible adult must be at least 18 years of age and willing to assume responsibility for your care. The responsible adult is usually a family member or friend. A taxi driver does not qualify as a responsible adult because he/she cannot assume responsibility for your care.


NY state law requires physicians transmit all prescriptions electronically directly to a patient’s pharmacy. You should discuss with your surgeon any medications prescribed when scheduling your surgery. These can often be picked up from your pharmacy before your day of surgery. Our recovery room nurse will review your surgeon’s postoperative instructions again with you prior to discharge.


It is critically important for you to have an empty stomach before you receive any type of sedation or general anesthesia for your surgical procedure. All patients must follow one of the two Preoperative Dietary Instructions described below. If you do not follow these instructions, your surgery may need to be delayed or rescheduled to another day.

Patients may vomit stomach contents while under sedation or general anesthesia. If the vomit goes into the lungs, patients may have serious breathing problems during and after surgery. On very rare occasions, patients have died from this complication, which is known as an aspiration.

Most of our patients are healthy or have only a few medical problems and may easily follow our Simple Preoperative Dietary Instructions, as listed below. However, pediatric patients or patients with multiple medical problems including all patients with diabetes should follow our Detailed Preoperative Dietary Instructions, as listed below.

If you have any questions regarding your diet on the day of surgery, please contact the ASCW Preadmission Nurse by calling 914-244-6779.

Simple Preoperative Dietary Instructions


Those are the simplest and safest instructions for patients to follow.

That means nothing goes in your mouth after midnight–no water, no gum, no candy–nothing.

You may brush your teeth, but do not swallow the water.

Some patients may be instructed by their Primary Care Physician, surgeon, anesthesiologist or the ASCW Preadmission Nurse to take specific prescribed medications with a sip of water early on the morning of surgery.

Detailed Preoperative Dietary Instructions

These instructions are for the few patients who are not able to tolerate fasting before surgery.

The American Society of Anesthesiologists recommends:

  • The patient must not eat any solid food after midnight.
  • The patient may drink clear liquids after midnight until 2 hours before the patient is scheduled to arrive at the Center.

Clear liquids include:

  • water
  • ginger ale
  • clear apple juice
  • black coffee or tea (NO milk or NO cream)

Children younger than 3 years of age:

  • The patient may follow his/her regular normal diet until 8 hours before arrival at the ASCW.
  • Formula: The patient may drink formula until 6 hours before arrival at the ASCW.
  • Breast Milk: The patient may drink breast milk until 4 hours before arrival at the ASCW.
  • Clear Liquids: The patient may drink clear liquids until 2 hours before arrival at the Center.

As listed above, clear liquids include water, ginger ale, or clear apple juice.


Smoking is harmful to your health and the health of others in your household. Patients and other household members should not smoke 24-48 hours before surgery to decrease the chance of breathing complications during and after sedation or general anesthesia.

Pediatric patients have a higher incidence of breathing complications during and after general anesthesia if they are exposed to second hand smoke.


In general, patients are encouraged to take their usual prescription medications on the morning of surgery, but there are some exceptions. Please follow the directions of your Primary Care Physician, surgeon, anesthesiologist or the ASCW Preadmission Nurse. Please contact the Center if you have any questions regarding which medications you should take on the day of surgery.

  • Patients may take prescribed medications on the morning of surgery with a small sip of water.
  • Patients who take medication for diabetes, blood thinning pills or water pills should consult their physician before surgery.

Patients should continue to use their inhalers as prescribed.


Patients should consult with their Primary Care Physician to regulate their insulin dosage on the evening before and day of surgery.

Urgent Medications

Patients should bring their “urgent medications” (e.g., insulin, inhalers, nitroglycerin) with them to the Center.

Items to Bring With You
  • Valid insurance card
  • Photo identification card
  • All fees not covered by your insurance must be paid in full prior to your surgery.
  • Urgent medications, as listed above.
  • If your child is the patient, please bring a favorite soft toy or blanket.
Items to Leave at Home
  • Your wallet (except for your insurance card, credit card and photo ID)
  • Jewelry and other valuables should be left at home for safekeeping.
  • The ASCW cannot assume responsibility for lost items.
  • Please leave children who are not patients in the care of a responsible adult at home.
What to Wear
  • Please wear loose and comfortable clothing.
  • Patients having shoulder, arm or hand surgery should wear a button down shirt, as it can be difficult to pull a shirt on over a sling, splint or cast. Patients having leg, knee or foot surgery should wear loose fitting pants. Leggings can be especially difficult to wear with a splint or cast.
What Not to Wear
  • Remove all jewelry including rings, earrings and body piercings. The metal in jewelry may burn the skin if electrocautery is used during your surgery.
  • Please do not wear contact lenses.
  • Please do not wear makeup.
  • Please do not wear dark fingernail polish. Fingernail polish may interfere with our ability to monitor the amount of oxygen in your bloodstream.
Arrival Time  

Please allow enough travel time to arrive at the Center at the designated arrival time—which is usually one hour before the scheduled start time of your surgery.

Not Feeling Well?

If you are not feeling well on the day before or the day of surgery, please contact your surgeon’s office as soon as possible.