Dr. Shapiro's Hair Institute • 1-561-414-4509

Why Should I Eat Before Surgery?

When a patient arrives for a hair transplant we always ask him or her if they have had breakfast (for a morning appointment) or lunch (for an afternoon appointment). It's important to realize we are interested in the patient having a good meal prior to arriving and feeding them during the procedure.

Now, we are not trying to make you gain weight! Instead, unlike a surgery where the patient needs to undergo general anesthesia, a hair transplant is done under local anesthesia and eating is a necessity.

In the case of general anesthesia there is a possibility of aspiration if food is in your stomach. But hair transplant surgery utilizes a local anesthetic, lidocaine, such as is used in a dentist's office. In this case, it is important that you have food in your stomach.

Why? When there is food in your stomach:

  • Your blood sugar will remain level throughout the procedure,
  • therefore the lidocaine anesthetic takes longer to metabolize,
  • therefore you need less lidocaine, and
  • therefore you experience little or no swelling after the procedure

So it is essential you eat and we will order you a sandwich of your choice when you arrive, the more carbs the better. We also insist when you go home that night that you have dinner since it is always better to take the post medication on a full stomach.

If you have any food choices that we should know about we can have it ready for you in advance such as if you are a vegetarian or wish to have kosher food. And if you are a big eater we will order you two meals if necessary.

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