All adult patients who are due
to undergo elective surgery will be offered a pre-operative
assessment; this will be done either face to face or over the
Surgical specialities included
are: Bariatric, Breast, Colorectal, ENT, General Surgery,
Hepato-Biliary, Oral Surgery & Dental, Orthopaedics, Plastic
Surgery and Upper GI. We also assess some patients who require an
Our Pre-assessment service runs
across both the north and the south of CDDFT:
In the North - appointments are
available at University Hospital of North Durham.
In the South - appointments are
available at Bishop Auckland Hospital and Darlington Memorial
You may be seen by a number of
our team colleagues including: Registered Nurses, Health Care
Assistants & Consultant Anaesthetists.
What does a
pre-operative assessment involve?
Pre-operative assessment is a
nurse-led service and plays a vital role in your preparation for
surgery. It provides us with a detailed check of your general
health and fitness for surgery and is also an opportunity for the
team to provide you with further information about your procedure
and anaesthetic, what to expect on the day of surgery and how to
prepare for this. All tests performed at the pre-operative
assessment clinic give us an overall picture of your current state
of health. Some people may require more tests than others. On some
occasions, results may require us to cancel your surgery pending
further investigation or a simple repeat of the tests at a later
For fit and healthy patients the
assessment may simply involve a health questionnaire, baseline
observations (including pulse, blood pressure, height &
weight), MRSA screening and advice on admission and fasting, all
conducted by our nursing team.
Patients with more complex
health problems, or those having major surgery, may require more
tests, including blood tests, urine tests, ECG, Echocardiogram,
X-Rays, Spirometry or Cardiopulmonary Exercise testing
How can you help to
improve your health prior to surgery?
If you feel unwell
before your surgery
Even with the best preparation,
you may feel unwell in the run up to your surgery. If you do feel
unwell when you are due to come in to hospital, we need to know.
Depending on the illness and how urgent your surgery is, your
operation may need to be postponed until you feel better.
Please contact the appropriate Pre-operative Assessment unit for
advice, this is important to minimise the risk of complications
from your surgery and anaesthetic.
'I am writing to congratulate you on your wonderful staff you
have working for you at DMH.'
Patient, Catering / Porters / Domestics, Darlington Memorial