Preparing for Your Operation at UM SJMC

Having a successful operation requires thorough planning and your careful participation in several steps of presurgical preparation.

Preregistering for Your Operation

Please plan to preregister at least two days before your scheduled visit.

The Night and Morning Before Your Operation

The skin cleanser, "Hibiclens" is the soap of choice prior to surgery. It is necessary to have the 4 ounce bottle, ensuring the main active ingredient is "Chlorhexidine Gluconate." Please follow the steps provided to ensure your skin is properly cleansed. If these directions differ from what your surgeon has provided, please follow any surgeon specific instructions. Do not use if you are allergic to chlorhexidine gluconate or any other ingredients in the soap. If so, shower with antibacterial soap in the same manner.

  • Skin must be prepped (washed) the night before surgery at your home. Skin must be prepped (washed) again at home on the morning of surgery.
  • Use half of the "Hibiclens" bottle each time you shower. In the shower, wet skin and with a freshly clean wash cloth, apply cleansing solution liberally. Cover the entire body from the neck down. The solution will not lather like traditional soap.
  • Do not allow this product to come in contact with your eyes, ears, mouth, internal genital area, or open wounds.
  • Do not apply any soaps, lotions, powder, deodorant, perfumes, moisturizers or makeup.
  • Chlorhexidine gluconate is absorbed by cotton washcloths and may cause discoloration.
  • Once the entire body has been cleaned, be sure to scrub surgical site(s) thoroughly for at least an additional two minutes. Wipe each area in a back-and-forth motion to adequately clean.
  • Rinse thoroughly. The skin may feel sticky for several minutes after the antiseptic solution has been used. This is normal.
  • Do not shave any body parts from the neck down (ex. legs, under arms, genital area).
  • Wear freshly cleaned sleepwear and sleep on freshly cleaned sheets.
  • Wear freshly cleaned clothes to the hospital.
  • Do not consume any food or beverages after midnight the night before your operation (this includes gum and mints).
  • Remove nail polish, makeup and jewelry, including body piercings.
  • Avoid smoking and alcoholic beverages for 24 hours prior to your procedure.
  • Take your usual medications unless otherwise directed by your doctor.