Day of surgery

Having a clear idea of what to expect can help you feel more comfortable on the day of your surgery. 

Surgeons operate out of different hospitals and your surgeon’s office will provide information about where your surgery is taking place and when you will need to arrive.

Surgery to remove the uterus or ovaries will typically require you to stay in hospital for 1–2 days.  

Before you arrive

The day before surgery, a nurse from the hospital’s Admitting Department will call to confirm the time of your surgery. It’s a good idea to leave a few minutes earlier than you need to, so you arrive on time.

Follow the instructions from your surgeon and the surgical booking office regarding bathing and when to stop eating, drinking or taking medications.

Pack high quality masks that you can wear throughout your stay to reduce the risk of infection. Coughing after surgery can cause complications and infections can slow down postoperative healing. You can also request that your health care providers wear a mask while they are caring for you.

Checking in

When you check in at the surgical centre, you’ll get a wristband with the name and gender found on your BC Services Card A BC Services Card is government-issued ID. You can use it as photo ID to verify your identity or age. If you're enrolled in MSP, it provides access to health services. It can be combined with your driver's license. . If this is different from the name or gender you prefer to use, ask for a “Name Alert” wristband with your correct name and pronouns. You can also ask for this information to be put on the front of your chart.

Once you’re checked in

You’ll be taken to either a room or a curtained area with a hospital bed where a nurse will share next steps with you. They’ll give you a hospital gown to change into, a basket to hold your belongings and possibly some medication. You will be given some privacy to change into a hospital gown. The surgeon may visit you, do some assessments and review what to expect from the procedure.

Going to the operating room

When it’s time for your surgery to begin, the nurses will help you onto the surgical table, put on a blood pressure cuff and attach some monitors. The surgeon may ask you to confirm your name and the procedure you are receiving and the anesthesiologist will talk you through the process of going under anesthesia. 

Once the anesthesia has put you to sleep, the surgeon will begin the procedure.

Immediately after the surgery

Once the surgery is finished, you’ll be taken to a recovery area, where nurses will monitor you closely until the anesthesia wears off. 

When you wake up, you may have a urinary catheter A thin, flexible tube that is inserted into the body to remove fluids from or introduce fluids into a specific area, like the bladder or bloodstream. These tubes are also used in some procedures to keep passages open. to help drain urine from your bladder — this is often removed within the first 24 hours after surgery. It is normal to feel groggy at this time.If you request it, nurses will also call your support people with an update.

You will be taken back to your hospital room and the nurses will help you get settled. They will continue to monitor you, help you with pain management and talk to you about your bandages and drains Thin tubes placed in the body during surgery to remove excess fluid or blood. if you have them. You may need help to get out of bed and walk around or go to the washroom. Make sure to ask the nurses for help.

Once you’re settled, your friends and family can visit you.

After your surgery, you will stay in the hospital for 1–2 days. After that, you will be discharged home or to your local temporary accommodations.

Getting home after the surgery

After surgery, you won’t be able to drive so you’ll need someone 18 years or older to escort you back to your home or accommodations. You’ll also need someone to supervise you for 24 hours following surgery. 

If you do not have someone to escort you after surgery, Hospital Transfers may be a good option to help you get home or to your accommodation. 

Need support?

Contact our team of experienced health navigators for information about gender-affirming care in B.C.