Breast Surgery Instructions

Breast Surgery Instructions

List of breast surgery instructions.

Your operation is scheduled at the Medical City Surgery Center in Denton. The address is 3316 Colorado Blvd. in Denton. It sits across the parking lot from the Medical City hospital Emergency Room. Take Exit 462 off of I-35 East. It is just minutes from Dr. Garner’s office

The night before surgery, absolutely nothing to eat or drink after midnight. The only exceptions are any usual morning medication taken with a small sip of water and toothpaste to brush teeth.

It is important to take medication given for blood pressure and diabetes on the day of surgery. Vitamins and supplements can be skipped.

Patients taking any medication that would thin the blood such as Aspirin, Fish Oil, Vitamin E, Coumadin, Warfarin, Xarelto, Eliquis, Pradaxa, etc. should be stopped for 5 days prior to surgery.  If you are unsure if you taking a blood thinner, call the office.

Prior to surgery, go to www.medicalcitysurgerydenton.com and click on Clinical History to complete your online history for the Surgery Center.  If you do not have internet access or would prefer to answer these questions on the phone, call 940-349-5500 and ask to complete history with a nurse. 

On the day of surgery, wear cotton underpants and warm socks.  A soft bra without an underwire or an athletic bra that fastens in the front may be more comfortable.  Shirts that button in the front may be easier after surgery as it is not necessary to raise the arms over the head.

 It is OK to wear deodorant.  It is OK to shave the armpit if you usually do this.

If you are under the age of 52 and have not had a hysterectomy or tubal ligation, you will be asked to do a urine pregnancy test at the Surgery Center when you check in.

If you have been told that you need a wire placed to mark the breast lesion “needle localization”, go to Solis mammography first.  Solis Mammography is located in the Professional Office Building attached to Medical City Denton in Suite 211.  Navigate to Medical City Denton and the Professional Building is located in front of and to the right of the hospital.  Solis is immediately to the right after exiting the elevators.  As the time required to place the wire is variable, it will usually be scheduled a few hours before the actual surgery.  Bring something to pass the time.  As soon as the wire is place and taped, head directly to the Surgery Center.  Do not go anywhere else. You will be given x-rays in a brown folder to give to Dr. Garner so she can see where the wire is in your breast.

 Once at the surgery center, make sure to check in with the staff at the front desk to let them know you are there.

The nurses will prepare you for surgery by placing an IV on the arm or hand that is opposite to the breast surgery side.  Remind the nurses if they attempt to place an IV on the same side.

You will see Dr. Garner, the anesthesia team, and the nurse before going back to the operating room.  If you do not have a wire in the breast, Dr. Garner will mark your breast with a purple marker to confirm the surgical side and location of the breast lesion.  Everyone will have you reiterate either the left or right breast to confirm location.  They are not being annoying, it is protocol.

 At this point, family will go out to the waiting room.  They will be contacted by phone when the procedure is done.  They do not have to stay in the waiting room and Dr. Garner will let them know an approximate time frame when to return.  It is helpful to have a family member who speaks English to assist with translation, if necessary.

The incision will be covered with a purple glue and a piece of tape.  It is OK to shower the next day but the incision should not be submerged in water until the glue and tape fall off on their own.

 If a drain is necessary, the nurses at the Surgery Center will teach you how to empty the drain.  It is important that you keep track of the amount of fluid removed each time it is emptied.  The drain should be secured by a pin when clothed to prevent the drain from pulling.  The drain has a loop through which a string can be passed making a necklace when in the shower.

If a lymph node biopsy is a part of your surgery, blue dye will be injected under the nipple after you are asleep. Blue staining of the skin is common and temporary.  The blue dye is excreted in the urine and will turn it green for the first day (yellow + blue).

 It is important to move the arm on the side of the breast surgery freely but no lifting on that side anything heavier than a gallon of milk for the first week. 

You may not drive on the day of surgery and after that, when no longer taking prescription pain medication.

You will be contacted by the office when the pathology report is available to discuss results and arrange any necessary follow up.

Consider using www.goodrx.com for medication coupon if necessary.  With this coupon, the post operative pain medication usually prescribed is around $10.

If you do not have health insurance and follow up treatment other than surgery is recommended, there are several resources:

a.  Affordable Care Act:  healthcare.gov to obtain insurance

b. JPS Eligibility Center for chemotherapy/ radiation: 817-702-1001

c. The Bridge for chemotherapy: 214-821-3820

d. GDAS center for chemotherapy: 972-635-3680

e. Landmark Cancer Center for radiation: 817-886-8730

f. Parkland Eligibility Center for chemotherapy/radiation: 214-590-8000