The term “elective surgery” can be misleading, as not all elective procedures are optional. Elective surgery is a non-urgent surgical procedure that involves cutting skin and tissue using a variety of tools and techniques. It is a procedure that is subject to choice (made by the patient or doctor) and can be safely scheduled in advance. The determination of whether surgery is elective is not always clear-cut as it depends on one’s health circumstances. Harvard Medical School explains that an elective surgery could fall under one of two categories: major surgery such as a hip or knee replacement, or surgery to repair a prolapsed (fallen) uterus, or minor surgery such as surgery to relieve carpal tunnel syndrome (an entrapped nerve in the wrist), or surgery to remove a cataract (cloudy lens) in the eye. Elective surgery may be postponed for any number of reasons and waiting in limbo can be challenging. Consider the following suggestions to help you cope as you wait and remain prepared for the procedure when it is eventually rescheduled:
- Openly communicate with your clinical care team: speak with your healthcare providers and ask what steps you can take to best manage your symptoms and whether there is anything you should do to lower the risk of your condition worsening. Be sure to know how to get in touch with your clinical care team (e.g., logging onto your patient portal, emailing your doctor or nurse, calling your physician, etc.) and how often you should check in.
- Track your symptoms and report changes: an elective surgery is scheduled when one’s condition and/ or symptoms are not life-threatening, however things can change. A change in the type or severity of your symptoms may imply your procedure should no longer be considered elective and requires immediate attention. Call your doctor if you notice new or worsening symptoms.
- Stay on top of your medications: If you are taking prescription medications for your condition, make sure you know how and when to get them refilled.
- Get help: ask friends and/ or family for additional help with everyday tasks (e.g., grocery shopping, meal preparation, housekeeping, etc.) to make sure you remain as healthy as possible until your surgery.
Depending on the situation, it may be advantageous to check with your surgeon and see if there are other location options for your procedure. Another healthcare facility, for example, may be able to perform your surgery sooner. For some types of procedures, freestanding surgical centers may have more capacity for elective surgeries.
For Information and Support
If you are concerned for yourself or a loved one regarding substance abuse and/ or addiction, we recommend reaching out for help as soon as possible. If left untreated, substance abuse can result in long lasting and potentially life-threatening consequences. Keep in mind: you are not alone! There is an entire network of professionals that are available to help and support you and your loved one throughout the recovery process. The earlier you seek support, the sooner your loved one can return to a happy, healthy, and fulfilling life.
Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions regarding our specific program at Haven House Addiction Treatment and/ or general substance abuse and/ or addiction treatment related information. Our highly trained staff is readily available to discuss how we might best be able to help you and your loved one. We can be reached by phone at 424-258-6792. You are also welcomed to contact anytime us via email at email@example.com.