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Before you undergo surgery on your spine you need to visit the hospital for a pre-operative assessment. This leaflet aims to explain more about the process for you.


What is a pre-operative assessment?

A pre-operative assessment is a check that is carried out ahead of surgery to ensure that you are medically fit for the procedure to be done. This time also gives us the opportunity to talk to you and confirm that you fully understand the procedure you are having.

Who does the assessment?

Your pre-operative assessment will be carried out by your spinal consultant, scoliosis nurse specialist and a spinal assistant practitioner.


How long does it take?

We normally suggest you allow a full morning for the pre-operative assessment.


What happens during a pre-operative assessment?

During the pre-operative assessment you will have some or all of the following tests done depending on your needs:

  • Observations including height, weight and blood pressure. Swabs will also be done to check for MRSA.

  • Urinalysis, which tests your urine for infection.

  • Blood test.

  • X-rays.

  • Medical photography. If you are the parent or legal guardian of a child undergoing surgery you will need to sign a consent form.

  • ECG, which records the heart rate and rhythm.

  • Lung functions, which measures the size of your lungs and how efficiently they work.

  • Neurophysiology (nerve tests).

  • Questionnaires, such as those relating to pain.

  • Physiotherapy (only paediatric patients).

  • Occupational therapy (only paediatric patients).

At the end of the pre-operative assessment you will be given an information pack, which includes information on blood transfusion, and a urine sample bottle to take home with you. Female will need to bring in a urine sample on the day of your surgery (female patients only).



We appreciate and encourage feedback. If you need advice or are concerned about any aspect of care or treatment please speak to a member of staff or contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS):
Freephone: 0800 183 0204
From a mobile or abroad: 0115 924 9924 ext 65412 or 62301
Letter: NUH NHS Trust, c/o PALS, Freepost NEA 14614,
Nottingham NG7 1BR

If you require a full list of references for this leaflet please email or phone 0115 924 9924
ext. 67184.


The Trust endeavours to ensure that the information given here is accurate and impartial.


Last updated: May 2017

Last updated: May 2017
Last updated: May 2017