At the Surgery Center of Fort Collins, we perform common pediatric surgeries all the time. Many parents choose to have their kid’s surgery performed here because it is a much more affordable option than having it done at a hospital, and we are still able to provide the same high level of care! (Learn more about why we can perform the same surgeries for less on our blog post What is an Ambulatory Surgery Center). If you are considering an elective surgery for your child, we encourage you to trust our qualified pediatric surgeons at the Surgery Center of Fort Collins! Here is everything you need to know about the process for our pediatric patients.
Types of Pediatric Surgeries
The most common pediatric surgeries we perform at the Surgery Center of Fort Collins are tonsillectomies and ear tubes.
A tonsillectomy is the removal of the tonsils, usually because they are prone to infection. This is a common surgery for children, and our ENT surgeons are very experienced in working with patients of all ages. The tonsils will be removed through the mouth in a quick outpatient procedure. To learn more about tonsillectomies at the Surgery Center, see our blog here.
Your child may benefit from ear tubes if they frequently suffer from ear infections. Ear infections are common in children, as are ear tubes. These tubes equalize the pressure from the ear drum and remain in the ear for six months to several years.
If your child needs another type of surgery, please reach out to us to see if it is one we can perform at the Surgery Center of Fort Collins.
What Your Child Needs to Know
Knowing what to tell your child about the procedure before they have surgery is not always easy. Children of different ages have different levels of understanding about anesthesia, pain medication, and the healing process.
Explain the process in age-appropriate terminology and assure your child that they are not being punished, but that the surgery will help them to feel better. We encourage children to bring a special item such as a stuffed animal, a favorite blanket, or other small toys with them on surgery day. Not only do these items keep them preoccupied during wait times, but they can offer a sense of comfort and familiarity in a strange place.
Kids are also invited to come tour our facility before their surgery day, meet their pediatric surgeon, the front desk staff, and other nurses and anesthesiologists that may be helping during their procedure. This is also a great time for children to ask questions! Encourage your child to ask their surgeon questions, both during a tour or on surgery day.
During pediatric surgeries, we require a legal parent or guardian to be on the premises at all times. We also ask that if possible, you leave other children at home so that the child having surgery can have your full attention. Let your child know that you will be present before the surgery and immediately after. We reunite parents with pediatric patients as soon as possible after surgery. After their procedure, your child may feel a little groggy or nauseous, but this is normal. Medicine can be provided to make them feel better, and then they will get a treat such as a popsicle! Soon after, you will be able to take your child home where they can finish the recovery process.
Pediatric Surgery Preparation
Preparing for a pediatric surgery is very similar to a surgery for adults. Within the days leading up to the procedure, you can schedule a tour of the Surgery Center to make your child feel more at ease (as mentioned above). Our pre-operative screening nurse will call you to go over your child’s medical history, current medications, confirm arrival times, and give you instructions about when to stop eating and drinking.
Patients, including pediatric ones, are not allowed to eat or drink anything after midnight the day before surgery. Explain to your child that they will not be able to have breakfast before their surgery, but afterwards they can look forward to a special treat like a popsicle!
We know that having your child undergo surgery can be scary – for both you and your child! We assure you that our surgeons are some of the best and most experienced pediatric surgeons in northern Colorado. Our staff cares for pediatric patients every day and we love doing it. If your child is in need of an outpatient surgery, we encourage you to explore your options with an ambulatory surgery center such as the Surgery Center of Fort Collins. Your child will receive the best medical care at a fraction of the cost compared to hospitals. If you have any questions about pediatric surgeries or anything else, please do not hesitate to call us at 970-494-4800. We are open Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 4 p.m.