Preparing for Your Acoustic Neuroma Surgery

If you decide to have surgery for your acoustic neuroma, we'd like to help you prepare. Being prepared gives you a better experience and may even help with your healing time after surgery.

Getting your body ready

  • Reduce or quit smoking, which can greatly enhance your outcome from surgery, as well as improve your overall health. We have many resources to help you quit smoking, including medications, support lines, and practical information for quitting. We will discuss this in your pre-operative visits.
  • Reduce or stop drinking alcohol.
  • At the end of this booklet are balance exercises that are helpful prior to and after surgery, particularly if you have found that your balance has been affected by your acoustic neuroma.
  • You can get a flu shot and pneumonia shot, preferably two weeks prior to your surgery.

If you develop an infection, head cold, or other illness a week prior to your surgery, please contact us. Let us know if you are not feeling well, as we may need to reschedule your surgery.

Your pre-surgery appointment

Within a month before surgery you will be scheduled for an appointment for a history and physical examination. Please bring a current list of any medications and be prepared to tell your provider about your medical history, including any surgeries that you have had.

Medications prior to surgery

Please look at this table so you will know which medications to stop or continue before surgery:

Medication Instructions for surgery
Aspirin, Excedrin Stop 14 days prior to surgery
Advil/Motrin, Aleve, ibuprofen, naproxen Stop 7 days prior to surgery
Coumadin Stop 5 days prior to surgery
Plavix Stop 7 days prior to surgery
Lovenox Stop 24 hours prior to surgery
Metoprolol, propranolol, atenolol Continue, including day of surgery
Lasix, HCTZ (hydrochlorothiazide), lisinopril, captopril, enalapril Do not take on day of surgery
Metformin, Glucophage, Actos, Januvia (diabetic medications by mouth) Do not take on day of surgery
Long-acting insulin (Lantus, glargine) Talk with your provider at pre-op appointment
Iron, vitamins, minerals Do not take on day of surgery
Herbals/supplements Stop 7 days prior to surgery

Support after surgery

Plan to have someone stay with you around the clock for the first 72 hours after discharge. You will need help with transportation, child care, and household chores for a few weeks.

You may contact the Office of Care Coordination to find resources for help at home. If you do need home health care, it is typically limited to once or twice weekly for 15 to 30 minute visits. The Office of Care Management can give you advice to figure out your finances and insurance coverage, find lodging or transportation for family, and arrange discharge plans.

Prepare your home

Because of possible balance difficulties immediately after surgery, please review the safety checklist for important information to reduce risk of falls and make it easier to manage at home after surgery.

Packing for your hospital stay

What should you bring to the hospital? Our suggestions include:

  • Your own night gown or loose pajamas, bathrobe, and slippers if you want to be more comfortable in your own clothing
  • Dentures and eyeglasses
  • A list of your daily medications including herbal medications, and including the dosage and frequency
  • Telephone numbers of people that you may want to call. You may also bring your cell phone and charger if you would like to make long distance calls. For courtesy, please plan to set your phone on a silent setting.
  • A ‘going home’ outfit that is easy to put on and take off
  • Leave extra jewelry and other valuables at home.

Instructions for the 24 hours before surgery

A nurse from the Same Day Program will call you between 2:00 pm and 6:00 pm on the day before surgery, or on Friday if your operation is on Monday. They will leave a message if you are not home regarding:

  • Having nothing to eat or drink (including coffee) after midnight
  • Which medications to take or not take the morning of surgery
  • What time you should arrive at the hospital