Depending on the type and stage of cancer, you may need surgery as part of treatment. The type of surgery you’ll need depends on the type and stage of cancer you have and where it’s located.
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Knowledge and review
Firstly, ensure that you have as many consults and opinions to ensure that you’re comfortable with your decision of surgery. Understand the options and alternatives. Ensure the procedure has been explained to you as well the pros and cons and alternative options as well as the potential complications.
The most important part of your pre-surgery preparation is to ensure that you understand the consent and that the procedure has been explained, and that you sign the consent form.
Doctors have to give you a cost estimate prior to surgery. If you have medical aid, check whether you have hospital co-payments and what comes out of your day-to-day savings, hospital- and oncology benefits.
Check your information
Ensure that all your information, contacts and medical history is conveyed repeatedly. Your allergy history should be on your medical clerk form; asked again by the admitting ward sister, the theatre sister and the anaesthetist.
Please inform the team that is caring for you about the medication you are on, this includes over-the counter-medication, such as asprin and pain medication, as well as supplements.
Surgical bookings and information
Prior to admission ensure that you have been informed of:
- What time you need to be there and where you need to go.
- When you can have your last meal and what you can eat.
- When you can have your last liquids.
- Information about your authorisation and cost estimates.
- Dos and don’ts.
Note: The most common cancer surgeries are explained. However, there are many more surgeries for the different types of cancers.