Waiting for the News of Loved Ones Undergoing Serious Surgery

Waiting for patients undergoing serious surgeryYou are in surgery and do not know what is going on or how long you are there. The medical staff is working away and they get lost in a time warp too. But your loved ones are sitting in a waiting room waiting for news of how you have fared from the serious surgery you are undertaking.

The stress they are under can be really difficult, especially when your operation is a serious one. Your loved ones need to be prepared. They should ask roughly how long surgery is likely to take. They might have to sit in the waiting room for many hours and should consider taking a thermos, sandwiches, and fruit. It could be a long wait and they need to keep up their energy.

Make sure that prior to surgery, you and your loved ones have asked the medical team a bunch of questions. Have an idea of how long the operation is likely to take and what are the possible outcomes (both good and bad).

They should have phone numbers of other family members at hand so that they can inform them of the outcome too. Serious illness is of concern to so many people; don’t forget them at this traumatic time.

I was in surgery for 7 hours and my husband had begun to panic. He was sure something had gone wrong. Luckily for him a nurse he knew came past and she went and checked on how I was going. He was very relieved to hear that everything was progressing well and I would soon be in recovery.

If you would like to know more about how we all coped with my serious surgery, you can read it in my book, ‘Thank God I Had a Stroke’

Tips and Hints
Be prepared. Ask questions. Have an idea how long surgery will take. Have food and drink with you to keep you refreshed. Preparation will make things easier in the long run.

28 thoughts on “Waiting for the News of Loved Ones Undergoing Serious Surgery

  1. Peter

    You are quite right in what you say here. While you are under anaesthetic, you are oblivious to the stress felt by those in the waiting room. Having food and drink is an excellent idea. Also consider taking an iPod and earplugs to listen to your favourite music. Music is a great stress reliever.

  2. Lisa Perkins

    My aunts Brain surgery felt like it took about 6 days until we heard any news on her condition!!! In all actuality, it took about 6hrs., but they were the longest 6 hours that our family had gone through… I can’t put into words just how nice it was to finally get the news that the surgery was over, and she was doing Excellent in recovery!!!

  3. Jane

    Can be a dreadful time. There are possibilities of complications arising which can be disturbing. Best to distract yourself The best thing to do is to bring some reading material that you can get engrossed in or a smart phone with a data plan.

  4. caitlin

    Very good article. It is so important to prepare for surgery and also to make sure your family is prepared as well.

  5. jackson ripper

    surgery can be an overwhelming prospect for family members. If your loved one is among the thousands of patients who receive heart surgeries every day, your support can make a world of a difference before and after the procedure. Prior to surgery, encourage your loved one to follow his or her doctor’s instructions. surgery usually takes several hours, so be prepared to spend some time waiting at the hospital. Most importantly, maintain a positive spirit and strive to keep the patient calm and comfortable throughout the process.

  6. Jack J

    Excellent information, I have not asked a lot of question before and almost stressed out one time when waiting on some one to come out of surgery. Since then I have been sure to ask a lot more quest and be better prepared for waiting on a friend or loved one to come out of surgery and it has definitely helped!

  7. Debbie Boulier

    The people waiting for their loved one or friend in a long surgery often find it very difficult. Not knowing how things are going is the number one question often asked. Since I am a nurse I will often try and find out for the families what’s going on and how it’s going if I can. It gives the people waiting some hope that the person will be okay.

  8. Chris W.

    I agree that the hospital waiting room must be a very stressful place for family members. I think that in addition to bringing food and arming themselves with questions, family members should also bring something to distract them while they wait such a good book, deck of cards, or a craft project.

  9. Kris H

    This is amazing advice. Often we get wrapped up in the eventual outcome of the surgery of loved ones that we forget to prepare by asking questions. We should ensure that we know how long the surgery and the possible outcomes can be. I love the tip about preparing ourselves nutritionally as we may be in hospital for hours. A hungry stomach will likely only cause us more anxiety and worry.

  10. Ana B.

    Yes, asking questions is key. It is better for both you and your loved ones to know as many details about the operation as possible. It makes everyone feel more comfortable and at ease with the situation.

  11. Edward Kent

    Great tips, my uncle had to undergo surgery a few months back, i remember i had to sit there waiting. Its a tiring process but if you do the things you recommended, they can really help!

  12. rose

    These are great tips to ask when someone is going into surgery. Waiting seems like forever…. Great information to know.

  13. jeffrey

    May be bring along some reading materials or tag along a MP3 player in your pocket while waiting for the love one undergoing serious surgery can help to kill time faster and reduce the amount of anxiety inside the mind.

  14. Latifah Lewis

    I hope I never have to go through surgery that takes that long nor do I want to be like your husband and wait for a long time for a love one to come out of surgery

  15. Wendy Mitchell

    All I can testify is to what my family did to pass the time while I was in surgery getting all my left side colon removed. My mom read a book-that is good if your mind can stay focused. Listening to soothing music is very good too.

  16. Mike

    The trick is to stay calm/ if your panicked, then your loved ones will be as well. Take a walk , take a break, do whatever it is that will take your mind off it. And remember that lots of people go through this everyday and that you are not alone. Finding a support group will help!

  17. Ash Kngsley

    As a sufferer of anxiety on a daily basis, I totally agree with your thoughts about having everyone well informed. The unknowns can put everyone who cares for you in greater stress than needed. Transparency is a must, whenever feasible.

  18. Samantha R.

    Yes it’s always smart to have something to keep your mind off it so you aren’t stressing you self out. I would recommend reading a book so you can make yourself feel like your in a different place at the moment.

  19. Jack

    When we go to surgery our loved ones need to have an idea of how much time the patient is likely to be in. This article would help many people.

  20. niraj

    yes discussing before undergoing comforts you as well as your loved ones which creates a strong environment full of hopes that is helpful for recovery.

  21. Seaf Wallace

    Having a greater understanding of what your body is about to go through will always make things less painful.

  22. Robbie

    I was in surgery for a long time too, only I wasn’t alowed to take food and drink in with me. It was all provided there however. Good article.

  23. Chris

    Totally agree with the Hints and tips, Defo take a watch with you, i was present at the waiting room of a family members surgery, forgot my watch and my phone was out of battery…. seemed to go on for a lifetime

  24. James Davis

    It’s always a little scary waiting for important news. Getting as mush information as possible before hand can take the edge off.

  25. bricetester

    I always get scared when I hear that a member of my family or close friends are going through some surgery, I always want to support them but at the same time I am worry about them. This is a great article!


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