At Carle, our well-trained pediatric surgeons diagnose, treat and manage children’s surgical needs. We take care of children, including premature infants, through the teenage years with congenital and acquired conditions. While specialization among surgeons usually focuses on a particular region or organ of the body, our pediatric surgeons provide comprehensive treatment services. Our goal is to be minimally invasive whenever possible, replacing traditional larger incisions with smaller ones.
At Carle, your child is our first priority. From a routine checkup, developmental or chronic health conditions, to severe acute illness, our team of specialists work together to care for children and all of their care needs. Our pediatric care teams combine compassion and expertise to evaluate, diagnose and treat children and adolescent patients through individualized care.FIND A DOCTOR VISIT INSTITUTE
Having a surgery or procedure is a big event for you and your child. The best way to prepare for your child’s surgery is to know as much as possible about what will happen and to share that information in an age-appropriate way with your child. To help you plan for your child's procedure, here’s what to expect before, during and after your visit.
Your child’s surgery may be scheduled at Carle Foundation Hospital or at one of our surgery centers in Champaign or Danville, IL. You and your child’s doctor will decide on the best Carle location based on specific medical needs.
Attend your preoperative appointment.
For some procedures, your child may need a preoperative appointment. During this appointment, you’ll meet the surgeon and possibly some members of your child’s care team. Your child may also need to have blood drawn or a physical exam so the care team can make sure your child is ready for the day of surgery. This is a great time to ask questions about the procedure, as well as what to expect during recovery.
Gather important information.
Take time in the days leading up to the surgery to collect:
Prepare your child for surgery.
Pack a bag.
Depending on how long your child will be at Carle, you’ll need to pack enough to get through your stay. This could include:
Whatever you decide to pack, please be sure to label personal items. We’ll do our best to help you keep track of them, but it’s your responsibility. Please do not bring any prohibited items.
Each department or clinic may have specific guidelines, so ask in advance if you have any questions.
Monitor your child’s health closely.
Tell your child’s care team about any important health changes within three weeks before surgery, including:
If your child gets sick in the week before the operation, call your surgeon's office to reschedule, or call pre-op if it is the day of surgery at (217) 383-3063. If symptoms related to your child's surgery or diagnosis change, make sure to update the surgeon. Your child's surgeon may want to reschedule the appointment based on how your child is doing.
Additional resources for your child and family
Child Life Services
Virtual perioperative area tour video (coming soon)
Having Surgery booklet for pediatric patients
The day of your child’s procedure can be hectic, so here are a few tips to make sure the day goes smoothly.
Help lower your child’s risk of infection.
Pay attention to eating and drinking rules.
Follow the rules you were given on the phone and in the surgery/procedure checklist you received to make sure your child’s stomach is empty at the time of anesthesia. If it’s not empty, stomach contents can come up and enter the lungs (called aspiration). Aspiration can cause serious problems. If you don’t follow these instructions, your child may not be able to have the surgery or procedure.
Give yourself plenty of time.
Make sure to plan enough time to pack your bags, get your child in the car, drive to the location where the surgery takes place, park and get checked in. Being late to your check-in time can delay your child's surgery, as well as other children's appointments.
Check in before surgery.
You’ll receive a phone call after 1 p.m. on the business day before your child’s surgery giving you a time to arrive at the hospital for check-in. Make sure to arrive at the check-in desk at the given time to get your child settled before the surgery team calls you back.
To get you and your child ready for surgery we’ll:
Updates during surgery
The hospital provides pagers to notify family of any updates during the surgery. Feel free to take a walk, grab a bite to eat or relax while you wait.
After surgery, your child will be taken to the recovery room, also known as the post-anesthesia care unit (PACU), where they’ll be monitored to make sure they’re safe and comfortable. Once your child is awake, you’ll be reunited in phase II recovery or an inpatient unit if your child is staying overnight. Each child is different, so wake up times can vary. Our goal is to have you be with your child as soon as possible.
When you’re at your child’s bedside after the procedure, it's useful to know:
The surgeon or care team will inform you of post-operative appointments your child needs. You may be able to schedule them while still at the hospital, or the team will give you a number to call to schedule later.
Care at home after surgery
With doctors practicing in 80 specialties at locations throughout the region, it’s easy to find the right healthcare team at Carle. Our mission is to serve people through high quality care, medical research and education.