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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the advantages of an Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC)?

A: As a state-of-the-art facility that was designed to provide the best possible environment in which to deliver and receive superior outpatient surgical care, Advanced Center for Surgery offers certain advantages over traditional hospitals, including:

  • Comfort—Advanced Center for Surgery was designed specifically with patients and their loved ones in mind. This means we offer amenities designed to make your experience as comfortable as possible.
  • Sophistication—Opened in 2012, Advanced Center for Surgery is one of the most advanced outpatient surgical facilities in the area.
  • Safety—Studies have long shown that outpatient surgery centers offer a lower risk of surgical site infection than outpatient surgeries performed at traditional hospitals.
  • Efficiency—Our staff is highly focused on just a few specialties, and because of this, they have a high degree of experience with your surgery and care.
  • Convenience—Advanced Center for Surgery is located in the heart of Altoona and offers easy access to hotels, dining, and entertainment.

Q: How is an ASC different from a regular hospital?

A: In addition to the advantages listed above, an ASC is different from a traditional hospital in that it only services a few specialties, such as orthopedics, podiatry, and ear, nose, and throat. A traditional hospital typically handles everything from emergencies and cancer to babies and heart patients.

Q: How early should I arrive before my procedure start time?

A: Usually, we ask you to arrive 1.5 hours before your scheduled procedure time. This will be verified during your pre-operative phone call.

Q: How long will my surgery take?

A: This will vary by procedure and patient. For most procedures, you can expect to be at the Surgery Center for 3-4 hours from admission to discharge. Check with your doctor about the specifics of your surgery.

Q: Will my family in the waiting room know what is happening to me?

A: A person, family or otherwise, whom you’ve identified as being able to share your protected health information may stay with you in the pre-operative area until you are taken to the Operating Room and then will be escorted to the Waiting Room. While in the Waiting Room, this individual may monitor your progress via our patient monitoring system. When your surgery is complete, your surgeon may speak with this/those individual(s). When your surgeon has finished your surgery, he/she will speak to your family and inform them of your outcomes.

Q: Why can’t I eat or drink after midnight, the night before my surgery?

A: You must have an empty stomach. Liquids or food in your stomach can cause serious, even fatal, respiratory complications when you receive anesthesia. If you have mistakenly consumed any substance after midnight, be sure to alert your pre-operative nurse or your anesthesiologist before your surgery. For your safety, please be aware that any consumption of food or drink may result in the cancellation of your procedure.

Q: What medications or vitamins should I take the morning of my surgery?

A: Your doctor or pre-operative nurse will discuss the specifics of your medications with you and give you instructions about what to take and what not to take. Be sure to take the least amount of water possible with any medications you are instructed to take.

Q: Do I need someone to drive me home?

A: The medication you receive will impair your driving ability for about 24 hours. We insist that you have an escort bring you to the Center, receive post-op instructions with you, and drive you home.