Important Information about coming to Day Surgery – Advice for Parents

Patient Experience

  • Reference Number: HEY1091/2023
  • Departments: Day Surgery (DSU), Paediatrics
  • Last Updated: 25 October 2023

Important Information about coming to Day surgery – Paediatrics

Before your child’s day of surgery 

  • You will receive an appointment for a telephone pre-assessment for your child. You must be available without distraction for this appointment. You will be given more information about your child’s admission and any questions you have can be discussed.
  • Please ensure you read and understand your child’s fasting (not eating and drinking before surgery) instructions. You will receive these instructions with your appointment letter. If these instructions are not followed, there is a risk that your child’s surgery will be cancelled for safety reasons. If you are unsure about these fasting instructions please contact us before your child’s surgery.
  • You must inform us if your child begins a course of antibiotics or develops any infections in the six weeks before the operation day. Infections include a chest infection (chesty cough), diarrhoea and vomiting, conjunctivitis (contagious eye infection), impetigo (contagious skin infection). Other illnesses you will need to inform us of are any of the childhood infections or illnesses such as chickenpox, measles, mumps etc. You will also need to inform us if your child has an asthma attack which required hospital treatment or if your child has any changes to their medication or starts any new medication
  • Please give your child a bath or shower and hair wash the day before the operation (hair washing is especially important for operations involving the face, ears or scalp).
  • Please be honest with your child about their day in hospital. We want this to be a positive and comfortable experience for them.

What to bring with you

  • Please bring with you a change of clean clothes for your child to wear during their operation, for example pyjamas, nightie, shorts and tee-shirt (nothing too close fitting around the neck and must not contain any metal). Children having orthopaedic surgery will be required to wear a gown for their operation, but please still bring in a change of clean clothes.
  • Some loose warm clothes to travel home in. Please remember that these will need to be loose around your child’s operation site.
  • Any comforters your child normally has, for example dummies, blankets, teddy bears, dolls, rags or pillows.
  • Any bottles or lidded beakers that your child uses as we only have un-lidded beakers. 


  • Please ensure that you have simple pain relief medication at home for after your child’s operation. Paracetamol and ibuprofen can be bought from any chemist and supermarket. There is also a pharmacy shop in the main hospital.
  • Please bring all inhalers with you on the day.
  • Please bring your child’s completed admission form which you will have received with your child’s appointment letter.

On the day of surgery 

  • Your admission will be on the Acorn Ward, Womens and Childrens Hospital, Hull Royal Infirmary.
  • The time on your child’s appointment letter is not the time of surgery, it is the time that all patients should arrive to be admitted and see the doctors. Operations are usually done in age order starting with the youngest, though this can change.
  • We ask that only one parent or adult with Parental responsibility come on the day of surgery as we are limited for space in our waiting areas and recovery.
  • Your child’s consent form will be completed on the operation day with the surgeon. This must be signed by somebody with parental responsibility for the child. This in most cases is the biological mother and father. Step-parents, grandparents and other family members do not automatically have parental responsibility for a child. This can only be given to them by a court by either an order or a residence order (this would need to be brought with you on the day of surgery).
  • You and your child will be staying with us for a least 1 hour after they have woken following their operation (some operations may require longer).
  • It is not safe to take your child home on public transport (bus or train) after an operation. You must arrange to take your child home in a car or taxi. Travel expenses can be claimed in certain circumstances from the General Office, main hospital building.
  • If you are using the hospital car parks, please ensure that you bring sufficient money / change as we do not have any change in the unit.
  • We do not allow parents or visitors to eat and drink in front of children who have come in for surgery. It is unfair to children who are not allowed to eat and drink so you will be asked to stop. Please be aware of this and prepare yourself to support your child.
  • All information about wound care, follow-up appointments, contact numbers and care at home will be given to you when your child is discharged. Please do not leave the Day Surgery Unit until you have received this important information from one of the nurses. 

After the operation

 Your child will require time off from school or nursery. This will be between 24 hours and approximately 2 weeks, depending on the type of surgery your child has had and if they require a wound check. This information will be given to you at pre-assessment and / or discharge.

  • A responsible adult must care for your child during the whole time of the recovery period. Your child must not be left at home alone,( even if they are of an age to be left on their own), for at least 24 hours after the operation.
  • Your child may need to avoid sports and other physical activity for a period of time depending on the type of surgery. This information will be given to you at pre-assessment and / or discharge.


QR code to open leaflet