At Northwest Community Hospital, our goal is to make your surgical experience as comfortable as possible. Patients usually have a better experience if they are well informed. So, in preparation for your inpatient surgery, please review this page as well as the FAQs.
If your child is having surgery, we want to do everything possible to put your child—and you—at ease. Learn more about pediatric surgery at NCH and how to prepare your child.
Prior to surgery, you will receive a thorough medical evaluation and will consult with a member of your surgical team. You will receive first-hand information on your procedure, what to expect and what to do afterward. Your surgeon's office will tell you where your surgery will take place.
Unless you are a patient in the hospital already, you may need to make an appointment with the Pre-Admission Testing (PAT) department prior to your surgery. You will receive a phone call from an NCH representative to schedule your PAT appointment. (This is separate from any appointment you may need to make with your primary care physician, surgeon or specialist prior to your procedure.) Please bring the following, if applicable:
At PAT, they will ensure that you are healthy enough to safely receive anesthesia. Be sure to tell the nurse or physician about any medications you are taking, and any allergies or past adverse reactions to medications or anesthesia. You will meet with an anesthesiologist and nurse to discuss your health history and any previous procedures that included anesthesia.You may also need to have the following taken:
If you have questions about pre-admission testing, please call 847.618.7250 or read our pre-admission testing FAQs.
Advance medical directives are a legally recognized means for communicating your healthcare wishes if you are too sick to make decisions. These pre-surgical decisions should be considered and discussed with your family members prior to any surgery.
Below are some guidelines for preparing for surgery:
For surgery at the main operating room (inpatient or outpatient)—please enter the North Pavilion through Entrance 2, and proceed to the reception desk on the second floor via the north elevators. View the campus map.
On the date of surgery, it is important that you arrive at the time you were asked to arrive—it could be one and a half hours or more before your scheduled surgery to allow time to prepare. We ask that your time is flexible. You may be called to come in early or be notified of a delay.
For surgery in the main OR, free valet parking is available between 6 am–6 pm at Entrance 2 of the North Pavilion. There are canopied areas in front of Entrance 2 if you need to be dropped off while someone parks your car. You can park for free in the Busse Garage. View the campus map.
An NCH Courtesy Van is available Mon–Fri, 6:30 am–5:30 pm, if you are traveling to or from the hospital campus for medical reasons—call 847.618.6480. The fee is $5 cash and the boundaries are Route 22 to the north, Cook/DuPage line to the south, Route 59 to the west and I-294 to the east.
At NCH, we are committed to helping prevent or control any post-surgical pain. Your doctor or nurse will work with you to develop a pain management plan. Please ask us for pain relief when any pain first begins.
You will be taken into the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU). You'll receive constant care from a post-anesthesia care nurse. While you're coming out of surgery, your doctor may call or visit your family or friends to let them know how you're doing.
As the anesthesia wears off, you'll wake up in the brightly lit PACU. Noises may seem louder than normal. You may have blurry vision, a dry mouth, chills or nausea. A nurse will check your dressing and blood pressure often. You may have an IV or other tubes used for drainage. Your surgery site may hurt or burn, so ask your nurse for pain medication if you need it.
Depending upon the type of surgery, the PACU nurse or anesthesiologist will decide when you can be moved from the PACU. It's usually one to two hours after surgery. You will be taken to your hospital room, where you'll stay for at least one night. Your family and friends may see you the same day as your surgery.
When the time comes for you to return home for further recuperation, you and your family member will be given written instructions prior to sending you home. Most patients are sent home with prescriptions that need to be filled. You may want to discuss the option of pre-filling your prescriptions with your doctor.
Depending upon the type of surgery you have, you may require home health care for a few days or weeks. Northwest Community Hospital has been a leader in providing outstanding home health care services since 1969. We provide one-on-one home care with 24-hour patient access to registered nurses and regular physician updates. Most patients are referred through their physicians; however you may request services directly if you have difficulty leaving your home and require intermittent and skilled health care. For more information, call 847.618.7800 or visit our Home Care section.
Your doctor may recommend physical rehabilitation therapy. For more information, call 847.618.3550 or visit our Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation section. A physician's order is required to schedule an appointment. To schedule an appointment, call 847.618.3700.