Preparing for Surgery


Most patients who can drive to their procedure will usually be able to drive home after.

One exception is surgery around the outer side of the knee – surgery to this area can cause a temporary weakness of the ankle / foot.

Surgery around the temple / forehead can cause some temporary drooping of the upper eyelid which might impair vision for a while.

Days off work

If you are planning to ask for a medical certificate for time off in the days after your procedure please discuss this with Dr Phare or our nursing staff before arranging time off with your employer.

Most of our operations will not require time off work in the days after the operation.

Blood thinners




Fish oil must always be stopped 7 days before surgery.

Aspirin is usually stopped 5-7 days before surgery.

Brilinta or Clopidogrel / Plavix should usually be stopped 5 days before surgery.

Eliquis or Pradaxa should be stopped 2-3 days before.

Stopping blood thinners before surgery is particularly important for procedures involving skin grafts and skin flaps.

If you take blood thinners and unsure about any of this please check with Dr Phare before booking in for surgery. If your specialist has advised you should never stop these medications, again advise us before booking in for surgery.

Take other medications like blood pressure tablets as usual.


If you have had a heart valve or blood vessel replaced you may need to take antibiotics an hour before surgery – please discuss with Dr Phare before surgery if this applies to you.

Food and Drink

Avoid food and drink in the 2 hours before surgery.

Aim to attend with an empty bladder.


If your operation will be on part of the body where there is hair the area around the operation will usually need to be shaved, usually about 10 x 10cm. This is best done two days before the procedure rather than just before the procedure as this has been shown to reduce infections.






If your procedure is on the face do not wear any makeup.

Please attend showered and use deodorant normally.

Do not come straight from a hot and dusty workplace - have a shower first.

If your occupation makes your clothes and / or shoes very dirty please change your clothes before attending, eg miners, mechanics, butchers etc.

Ideally wash the surgical area with soap ( unless under the hair ) and only apply moisturiser if the area is dry / cracked.


Please wear loose clean clothing and shoes that you can easily take off and put on again.

Consider wearing short sleeves if the lesion is on the forearm.

If the lesion is on the neck wear a shirt without a collar.

Do not wear clothes with buttons, fasteners that you can’t easily operate. Clothing may get blood or disinfectant on them so consider wearing darker colours and perhaps older garments that are less precious to you.


As will be with you for a prolonged period in a small room we ask all patients to wear a face mask for surgery. This should not be a cloth mask, it should not have a plastic valve on it and ideally would be an N95 or P3 mask although surgical masks are acceptable.

COVID19 / colds etc

If you have or have recently had COVID19 or another infectious respiratory illness you MUST postpone your surgery. If there is a close contact with COVID19 or a household contact with COVID19 or a cold, please also defer your operation.


If you are planning to travel away from this area or go abroad in the 3 weeks after your surgery, please advise Dr Phare both before scheduling the operation and on the day of the surgery BEFORE we start getting equipment out and ready.

Weddings and Social Events

Avoid planning surgery in the weeks before a social event where your appearance is important to you, particularly on the face or scalp as your wound may take some time to settle.


Please advise Dr Phare on the day of the operation if you have anything electronic inside the body or a hearing aid. In particular this includes pacemakers, cochlear implants, implanted pumps but does not include shunts, joint replacements, heart valves or stents.


Smoking greatly hinders wound healing – try and stop smoking or at least cut down 12 hours before your operation and while you have stitches.