What can my child eat and drink the night before and day of his/her surgery or procedure?

All surgeries or procedures with Anesthesia need to follow these instructions:

  • No food for eight hours before your child’s surgery (even food given through a feeding tube)
  • Your child may have:
    • Formula or milk up to six hours before surgery
    • Breast milk up to four hours before surgery
    • Clear fluids up to two hours before surgery. The defining feature of a "clear fluid" is the ability to see through it and clearly read text.
  • Clear fluids are:
    • Water
    • Apple or white grape juice
    • Carbonated drinks, such as soda pop
    • Sports drinks such as Gatorade®
    • Pedialyte®
    • Clear tea
  • No milk, creamer, or lemon added to any drinks.
  • No swallowing of gum, mints, or candy.
  • Crushed medicines may be given with up to 2 tablespoons of plain apple jelly (not apple sauce, pudding, or yogurt) at least two hours before surgery.
  • Do not use apple pudding, apple sauce, or yogurt

Your child’s stomach must be empty for surgery. We do not want food from your child’s stomach to get into the lungs during surgery. Surgery will be delayed or rescheduled if you do not or cannot follow these instructions.

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