Jan 21, 2024

Upcoming Surgery? Don't Forget To Pack These Items

In addition to any nerves you may have before a surgical procedure, knowing what to pack in your overnight bag can be challenging.

"We recommend making a list for yourself and packing your bag a day or two in advance to eliminate any unnecessary stress," shares colon and rectal surgeon, Ryan Moore, M.D. "Patients have the best outcomes when they truly understand their procedure and have a positive attitude towards recovery – that's where I want my patients to focus their energy."

Dr. Moore shares a cheat sheet, identifying the most important items to pack before a surgical stay.

You must bring a government-issued ID card with a photo and proof of health insurance. Without them, you risk delaying your surgery. If you are uncertain what proof of identification to bring with you, contact the hospital.

It is also very important that you bring all of your medications with you, as well as a written list of the doses and dosing schedule for each medication.

Even if your hospital stay won't be very long, there are many personal care items, clothing and communications devices you should pack.

Personal Care:


Often patients want to change out of the hospital gown if they are able. If your procedure allows for this, pack the following items to stay comfortable.

Sleep Aids:


Depending upon your condition and tastes, you may want to bring non-perishable drinks and snacks with you.

Since the hospital is not responsible for your personal items, you should not bring anything of high value or sentiment, including:

"Anything you don't have that's an essential item, the hospital will likely be able to provide it, or find someone who can purchase it for you. Pack a few key items, and spend your time and energy focusing on your recovery," concludes Dr. Moore.

The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.

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government-issued ID card with a photo and proof of health insurance. bring all of your medications with you Personal Care: Clothing: Sleep Aids: Communications/Entertainment: