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Surgical Evaluation Center Frequently Asked Questions

Question 1: What can I expect during my appointment at the SEC?

Answer: During your appointment, a healthcare provider will:

  • Take your medical history
  • Perform a physical examination
  • Review pertinent tests ordered by your doctor
  • Discuss which medications you should or should not take before and immediately after your surgery
  • Order any additional tests that may be necessary to make sure it is safe to proceed with surgery
  • Discuss your planned surgery with your surgeon or anesthesiologist, as necessary

Question 2: What should I bring to my appointment at the IMPACT Center?

Answer

  • An updated list of your medications including the medication name and the dose in milligrams, the number of pills you take at a time and how often per day you take them. Please bring a list of all over-the-counter medications and supplements that you are taking as some of these medications can have unwarranted side effects which may increase your surgical risk. (If you prefer, you may bring in the original medication containers.)
  • The name, phone and fax number of your primary physicians and any other specialist you see regularly.
  • Sometimes, incomplete information about ongoing or prior medical problems can prevent surgery from taking place as scheduled.
  • If you have had any evaluation outside of Gwinnett Medical Center for a possible stroke, heart disease or lung disease, please bring the following documents directly to the SEC to avoid unnecessary delays in your surgery:
    • Carotid ultrasound reports (within the last 5 years)
    • Cardiac catheterization reports (within the last 10 years)
    • Stress test results (within the last 3 years)
    • Echocardiogram reports (within the last 5 years)
    • Electrocardiograms (a photocopy of the ECG tracing)—(within the last 5 years)
    • Pulmonary function test results (within the last 2 years)
    • Recent laboratory tests (within the last 3 months)
    • Pacemaker implantation and evaluation records (within the last year)
    • Discharge summaries from recent hospitalizations (within the last year)
  • If there are any other medical records that you feel would be important for documenting major medical evaluations you have had, please bring them. Since we will review in detail your past medical and surgical history, you may want to write this information down before your appointment.
  • If you choose to have your records faxed to us, please call to confirm their receipt.

Question 3: What if my medical condition is very complicated or I am not ready for surgery?

Answer: The SEC provider will inform you and your surgeon about any conditions that require treatment before surgery. This information becomes part of your medical record and will be referred to throughout your care at Gwinnett Medical Center.

If your SEC provider finds that you are not medically optimized for surgery or you have medical conditions that may increase your risk for surgery significantly, then we will discuss your evaluation with your surgeon. Your surgeon can then decide whether surgery is right for you at this time.

Question 4: If I need additional testing, can this be done the same day as my visit to the SEC?

Answer: All blood testing can be done the same day. However, in some cases, patients require additional testing, such as a stress test. The SEC will coordinate any additional testing to minimize the delay of your surgery.

Question 5: Will you have enough information to know if I am ready for surgery?

Answer: In most cases, your visit to the SEC will provide enough information to the SEC healthcare provider to assess if you are ready for surgery. However, sometimes an underlying problem will be identified that needs to be addressed before surgery. When this occurs, arrangements will be made for more testing or medications will be prescribed as necessary.

Question 6: Will my surgery be delayed for any reason?

Answer: In most cases, surgery will not be delayed. However, even a simple problem like the common cold or a poorly controlled pre-existing medical condition such as high blood pressure or diabetes can adversely affect surgical outcomes. In such instances the SEC provider may adjust your current medications, start new treatment or ask you to follow up with your regular doctor for more treatment. For a few patients, re-evaluation at the SEC may be required prior to surgery. The SEC will inform you and your surgeon about any conditions that require treatment of medical optimization before surgery.

The Surgical Evaluation Center program is a service of the GMC Inpatient Medical Group and is available at both the Lawrenceville and Duluth campuses. If you have any question or concerns, please call:

Surgical Evaluation Center–Lawrenceville
Phone: 678-312-3351
Fax: 678-312-3204

Surgical Evaluation Center–Duluth
Phone: 678-312-7537
Fax: 678-312-7379