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How soon to stop drinking alcohol before surgery??

How soon to stop drinking alcohol before surgery??

Postby Holls » Fri Dec 14, 2007 4:41 pm

I know that with cigarettes (and apparently pot) you need to leave a 2 week window on either side of the surgery....

but what about booze? I haven't heard anyone say anything about it and I do have a couple of parties this weekend that I would normally be drinking at.

Anyone's PS say anything?
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Postby buggy85 » Fri Dec 14, 2007 4:49 pm

Hey Holls,

Looks like we're on the same day. I'm not planning to drink this weekend but my PS didn't say anything about it. Some people's surgeons say it's okay two nights before. I definitely wouldn't drink at all on Sunday night.
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Postby terriberri » Fri Dec 14, 2007 5:25 pm

my surgeon said 2 weeks before no alchohol. I had a drink 10 days before. I think it is a natural blood thinner and the face is exceptionally prone to bleeding. I've heard that if there is too much bleeding they won't opperate. i think that happened to someone on here. SO, if i were you i definitely wouldn't drink a few days before. And not even one, cuz it's hard to stop once you've had one...just my advice
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Postby Hekie » Fri Dec 14, 2007 6:19 pm

I was told it wasn't an issue when I talked about it with my surgeon - he was fine with me drinking heavily on the Saturday before my Monday op as it would all be out of my system by then. Lots of docs have different feelings on this. I was certainly totally fine for the op and it went perfectly.
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Postby riotgirl626 » Fri Dec 14, 2007 6:50 pm

I was told 1 week minimum. Reason being that you are given quite a lot of drugs before surgery. Liquor is a blood thinner. I would play it safe and stay clear for at least a week. You want to be healthy.
I am now 2 weeks post op and the other night I had 2 glasses of wine and my nose started gushing blood out of both nostrals in public. Totally freaked me out. I was told 2 weeks after surgery would be ok,...hhmmm
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Postby YourOwnChoice » Sat Dec 15, 2007 3:06 am

2 weeks is the usual standard
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Postby Holls » Sat Dec 15, 2007 4:51 pm

Darn it. I don't know if i will be able to handle not drinking tonight. It's my birthday, I'm going to a concert, in a private suite where the booze is provided free, oh, and I'm nervous as hell about my surgery and kinda wouldn't mind some "liquid courage". If *that* 'aint a hard combination to stay sober in, I don't know what is!!
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Postby lexis » Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:15 pm

i was never told anything about not drinking before my op. I drank pretty heavily 2 or 3 nights before. This time around i prob wont drink for 2 weeks beforehand, now that i have heard the precautions
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Postby Hekie » Fri Dec 28, 2007 5:12 am

tashaaa, docs all give differing advice on drinking. I specifically told my doc that I get trashed on Saturday nights and did he recommend I stayed off the booze prior to my Monday surgery and he had no concerns with it as it'd be out of my system well before Monday. I was totally fine drinking a lot on the Sat night before my Monday op. So ask your doc's opinion but know that drinking before the surgery is not something that'll have a negative outcome.
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Postby YourOwnChoice » Fri Dec 28, 2007 11:51 am

alcohol is a known blood thinner..Red wine, etc...and this is why for safety issues one stops all alcohol 2 weeks before..same reason as aspirin, Motrin, Vit E, etc

http://www.merck.com/mmhe/sec25/ch301/ch301a.html

Eliminating or minimizing tobacco and alcohol use before undergoing surgery that involves general anesthesia can increase safety. Recent tobacco use makes abnormal heart rhythms more likely to develop during general anesthesia and impairs lung function. Excessive alcohol consumption can damage the liver, causing heavy bleeding during surgery and unpredictably increasing or decreasing the effect of the drugs used for general anesthesia. Alcohol consumption should be decreased gradually, however, because a sudden decrease before undergoing general anesthesia can cause harmful effects, such as fever and abnormalities of blood pressure or heart rhythm.

The doctor performs a physical examination and takes a medical history, which includes the person's recent symptoms, past medical conditions, use of tobacco and alcohol, and allergies. The person is also asked to list all drugs currently being taken. Nonprescription as well as prescription drugs must be disclosed, or serious health problems could result. For example, the use of aspirinSome Trade Names
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, which a person may consider too trivial to mention, can increase bleeding during surgery

http://www.cosmeticmiracles.com/handboo ... rgery.html

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/3211099.stm
http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/abstract/318/7194/1311
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Postby Hekie » Fri Dec 28, 2007 10:29 pm

If you Google "alcohol as blood thinner" and variants of that, the results that come up (citing of studies, surgeon's pages etc) are very variable and all include the modifier that alcohol "may" act as a blood thinner. There are a couple of links that indicate a two week abstinence but the majority that come up for me put the recommended "best to stop drinking" period at either 1 day prior to surgery, 2 days prior or 7 days. In fact, from what I could tell (I did just skim read) even the article YourOwnChoice is citing doesn't say anything about stopping two weeks prior to surgery.

I'm not trying to discourage people from going with their doctor's recommendations, just trying to provide another voice as this is something that really varies surgeon to surgeon. Also, bearing in mind that if you live in the US then there is a culture of litigation that likely makes some doctors extremely conservative on certain issues even if the risk is absolutely zilch. I live somewhere with universal no-fault health insurance so we don't sue for medical malpractice etc. My doctor has been in practice for years and has a lot of surgical experience and he did not perceive there was a risk with drinking so long as it was out of my system by the time of my surgery. However, (to provide a counter story to show he isn't just very laissez-faire with pre-op preparations) he *did* recommend that I not take a particular type of party pill -illegal in the US but legal in my country- on that Sat night as there hasn't been enough research into this drug's possible side effects and/or interaction with other medication.

It's always going to be best to live a perfect life and try and do everything possible to have a safe surgery, but people are human and are going to want to have as much info. as they can to make a decision for themselves going into surgery. In an ideal world, don't drink, don't smoke and don't sit in the sun post-surgery. However, I drank prior to mine, fully in complicance with my doc, and had no problems. I only drink/go out on the town once a week and I wasn't going to miss out on that (given I'd be staying home the following weekend recovering). I then waited till the next weekend which was just about 12 days post-op before going out again and drinking, and my doc's only concern was me hitting my nose on something when drunk - there was no issue around the alcohol as I wasn't on any meds by that point.
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Postby YourOwnChoice » Fri Dec 28, 2007 11:06 pm

After spending so much $ on elective surgery why would one want to anything that might reduce the chances of a 100% successful outcome? Your Dr's pre-op instructions are not common.

As my user name says-your own choice.
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Postby Hekie » Sat Dec 29, 2007 2:54 am

Not common says who? People on here don't seem to go to a huge number of surgeons - the same few get a lot of business. And they're also mostly based in the US (see my previous point re. litigation).

And while you spend big bucks on this surgery, people are also a) human and b) usually (one hopes) intelligent enough to read up on a wide variety of information and assess that, rather than blindly following a two week dictate that isn't even the predominant online opinion, let alone the most common advice given by PSs

Like I said, there is no One True Best Way to go about surgery, and the reality is that not every person who has it is going to ice for 20mins an hour, use Arnica, use Bromelain, not drink for two weeks prior, sleep elevated for months on end etc etc ad infinitum. (Note: I did many of these things and others, but no-one will follow every single piece of advice on this board.) Which is why I'm commenting to provide some (to my perception) balance on a board where there's a heap of good info. but too many people saying "do it this way or you'll have a bad outcome and/or someone will find some way to fault you if something goes wrong during surgery because you weren't infallible in every single regard". That's not reality, and I'm still not convinced you've remotely shown that the 2 week drinking thing is the standard advice pre-surgery. If people want to be super cautious then sure, go for it - I'm not saying that's stupid or discouraging it or anything. But it may well be unnecessary and for those who want to go out and have a last hurrah prior to surgery, I want them to know that they're not going to kick it on the operating table because of that.
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Postby ej35401 » Sat Dec 29, 2007 8:51 am

hummm.. I never had this discussion with my doc. I drank one beer the night before my surgery.... the surgery I had yesterday. They never even asked when I last had alcohol. The anesthesiologist was chatting with me and said I was in the low risk category and every thing would go smoothly... There didn't seem to be any concern.
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