Winchester Surgical Clinic

Winchester Surgical Clinic

Back to Document

How to Prepare for Scheduled or Elective Surgery 

If you are facing surgery, take the time to learn about the surgery your doctor has recommended so you understand what's involved and feel comfortable that it's the best treatment. It also recommends that you take the time to find the right surgeon and hospital and to ask your surgeon questions to make sure the operation is as safe as possible.

Even though millions of operations are performed each year, surgery is a big decision for every person. Take the time you need to ask questions before you undergo surgery. When you are well-informed about your treatment, the chances are better that your will be more satisfied with the results.

Deciding on surgery

If your health care provider recommends that you have an operation, it's important you have as much information regarding the surgery as possible.

Asking your provider the following questions can help you determine if surgery is right for you. Many people find it helpful to take notes or have a family member or friend with them when discussing these questions to help them remember the information their doctors provide.

Ask your doctor:

  • Why do you think surgery is the best treatment?

  • How will the surgery improve my health or quality of life?

  • How long can I safely delay the surgery?

  • What risks are involved?

  • Does my health or age create a higher risk for complications?

  • What's the risk for death with this surgery, in general? For me, considering my age and health?

  • What sort of complications might arise? What are the chances of these complications happening to me?

  • Could more surgery be necessary?

  • What type of anesthesia will be used?

  • How long will I be in the hospital?

  • What can I expect during recovery?

  • What will my condition be when I go home?

  • When can I resume my normal activities and go back to work?

  • What, if any, limitations will I have after surgery?

Getting a second opinion from another health care provider also can help you make your decision. Having another doctor review your case can verify your diagnosis and ensure surgery is preferable to other treatments. In addition, health insurance companies may require a second opinion and may require you to choose a doctor from its list of providers.

Preparing emotionally

Anxiety and fear are normal responses to planned surgery. But having a full understanding of the procedure can reduce your stress and result in a better outcome.

People scheduled for an operation often find it helpful to practice relaxation exercises, such as deep breathing, meditating, and visualizing a positive outcome from surgery and a quick recovery period.

Preparing physically

Preparing physically can increase your chance of a successful surgery and timely recovery.

In the weeks before surgery, you should:

  • Quit smoking if you smoke. If you can't quit, at least cut back on your smoking.

  • Ask your provider if you need to change the schedule and dosage of any medications you take. Be sure your provider knows all the medications you take, including over-the-counter and prescription ones, vitamins, and herbal remedies, especially any blood-thinning medications, such as aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

  • Ask your provider if you can maintain your regular exercise routine. If you've been sedentary, ask if starting a gentle walking routine would be beneficial.

  • Avoid alcohol and illegal drugs.

  • Eat a well-balanced diet, including plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and water. Many surgeons recommend nutritional supplementation before the surgery. Ask your health care provider before using any supplements.

  • Avoid aspirin or other aspirin-like medications that interfere with blood clotting, beginning seven days before your surgery. If you take aspirin every day, ask your provider how you should cut back.

Preparing your life

When scheduling surgery, it's important to take into consideration your job and family commitments. If you have children or pets, you'll need to arrange for their care while you're in the hospital. You'll also need to keep your supervisor at work aware of your surgery date and how long you expect to be out of the office, and work with him or her to train someone to cover your responsibilities.

Become familiar with your medical benefit plan ahead of time so you'll know what portion of the costs you'll have to pay and how you'll make those payments.

Preparing the day before

Your surgeon and anesthesiologist should give you specific instructions about what you can and can't do the day and night before your surgery. Follow them exactly; failure to do so could be life-threatening.

Be sure to ask the following questions:

  • What can I eat or drink the night before? Typically, you must not eat or drink anything—even water—after midnight before the day of surgery.

  • Are there any medications that I will need to take on the day of the surgery? Your doctor may recommend taking some medication with a sip of water on the morning of the surgery. Be sure to review all of your medications with your surgeon before the surgery.

  • Do I need to have an enema or take a laxative the night before?

  • Are there any restrictions on other activities?

Finally, get a good night's sleep and be ready to arrive at the hospital in the morning with a family member or trusted friend who can be a source of strength and calm.

Since 1956 Winchester Surgical Clinic has provided our region with exceptional surgical care. On March 1, 2010, the group of general surgeons who comprise Winchester Surgical joined Valley Health. Working together, the hospital and surgeons will be even better aligned to provide quality, state-of-the-art care.

The general surgeons at Winchester Surgical Clinic are experienced in many fields including disorders of the breast, endocrine system, and gastrointestinal systems. They bring to the table many years of experience in both traditional surgical methods and the latest noninvasive laparoscopic surgical techniques. All of our surgeons are Assistant Clinical Professors of Surgery for the Virginia Commonwealth University and as such, dedicate their time to train, teach and help develop future general surgeons.


When major surgery is needed, you can depend on these physicians to have the best training, experience and skills needed to perform colon/rectal surgery, gallbladder, hernia, vascular access, skin grafts, laparotomies, appendectomies, thyroid and parathyroid surgeries, as well as breast surgeries.

We also provide the following services in-office:
  • Wound Care
  • Ultrasound thyroid/breast
  • Ultrasound vein mapping
  • Mole Removal
  • Breast biopsy – when indicated
  • Excision cysts/lipomas
  • Hemorrhoidal banding
  • Incision & drainage subcutaneous skin infections
  • Incision & drainage of thrombosed hemorroids
  • Simple laceration repairs
  • Removal of skin lesions
Talk to your doctor for more information.

Our Providers:
Loretta A. Boyd, MD 
James P. Dumont, MD 
Thomas J. Gibson, MD 
Charles E. Hyre, MD 
Jorge L. Posadas, MD
Paul J. Ulich, MD

All WSC physicians are board certified. The surgeons are on the staff of the Winchester Medical Center and the Winchester Surgi-Center Outpatient Facility. To make an appointment call (540) 536-0130. The office is located at 20 S. Stewart St., Winchester, VA 22601.

Physicians wishing to refer patients to Winchester Surgical Clinic should contact Susan Stewart, New Patient Referral Coordinator, at 540-536-0130, ext. 70772, or email

For your convenience, we participate with most insurance companies. Because of the cost of billing, it is important that the appropriate co-payments be made by you at the time of your visit. We do accept most major credit cards. Valley Physician Enterprise billing office handles all insurance claim filing, billing and is available to answer any questions you may have at (540) 536-3321.
Financial assistance application forms are available in English and Spanish.    English    Español
To view or print these forms, you will need Adobe Reader installed. Click here to download it for free.

Patient Forms
Please print out the forms below and complete them by hand.  You can bring the completed forms with you to your appointment -or- you can scan the completed forms and send them to us electronically. Click here to send the forms as email attachments.

Medical History Form
Patient Registration Form

Winchester Surgical Clinic
20 S. Stewart Street
Winchester, VA 22601
Phone: 540-536-0130
Fax: 540-536-0135
Hours: Monday - Friday, 8:30am - 5:00pm