Do you have to go through a medical operation? You already know that you are asked to fast on D-Day, but that’s not all. Indeed, to properly prepare your body and ensure the best possible result, there are certain things that you absolutely cannot take in the hours or days before surgery. In order to fully understand this relatively strict and important rule, read now our guide on the 7 things prohibited before an operation: food, tobacco… varnish… we explain everything to you!

Feed :

Ears prick up when the word “surgery” is mentioned, because no one likes the drugs and pain that often come with this type of care. An important part of any surgery is to stay fasting. For what ? The reason is simple yet very important: to avoid the risk of inhalation or vomiting, a serious complication that occurs when stomach contents enter the lungs during anesthesia. Doctors therefore generally recommend that patients not eat for at least 6 hours before surgery.

Tobacco :

Most smokers don’t measure their habit to understand the risks. However, before surgery, the consumption of nicotine is strictly prohibited, as it significantly increases health risks. The substances inhaled by cigarettes prevent adequate oxygenation of the blood to vital organs and they hinder postoperative healing. This is why patients are strongly advised to quit smoking at least four weeks before the operation. Thus, by limiting exposure to harmful products such as nicotine, the patient is better protected and can benefit from a faster recovery time.


Pulse and oxygen levels in the blood are checked during a surgical operation. To measure these values ​​correctly, a pulse oximeter is placed on the patient’s finger. Indeed, if the patient wears nail polish, it could mask changes in skin color or interfere with pulse measurements and prevent the surgeon from monitoring the patient’s vital signs. It is for this reason that patients are generally advised not to wear nail polish before an operation, even if it is transparent.

Over-the-counter medications:

Over-the-counter medications are commonly used for the relief of common symptoms, such as headaches and muscle aches. However, before an operation, it is important to communicate with your doctor, as excessive or improper use of over-the-counter medication may interfere with the procedure. Various types of over-the-counter medications are known to reduce blood viscosity and increase the risk of excessive bleeding during surgery. Thus, it is always best to seek advice from your doctor to avoid complications from off-label use of over-the-counter medications.

Cosmetic products :

It is forbidden to use perfumed or coloring cosmetic products before an operation, as they could interfere with certain surgical procedures and damage the operated area.

Alcohol :

It is forbidden to consume alcohol before an operation since it can affect the patient’s ability to breathe properly and cause a slow heart rate, which could increase the risks associated with general anesthesia. Additionally, there is also an increased risk of post-operative infection in patients who have consumed alcohol close to their surgery date.


It is forbidden to consume caffeine before an operation, because it can increase the chances of having tremors during the surgery, which decreases the quality of the work carried out by the nursing staff. In addition, it can also cause a harmful effect on the cardiovascular system, cause strong involuntary muscle contractions and cause a feeling of anxiety in some people.

How to properly prepare your skin for D-Day?

A shower without aggressive product:

It is recommended to use an antiseptic soap like Bétadine moussessante to clean yourself properly and thoroughly before the intervention in order to minimize the risks of infection linked to the operation. It is preferable to carry out this cleaning the day before or in the morning at least 2 hours before entering the operating room.

Hair removal of the area to be operated on indicated by your surgeon:

In order to minimize the risk of infection during the procedure, it is recommended to use a clipper or a depilatory cream (by scrupulously following the manufacturer’s instructions) to depilate the area concerned. It is strongly advised not to use a razor which can cause wounds through which microbes can enter the body and cause postoperative infections.


Use natural oils like almond oil or shea butter 72 hours before D-Day to ensure good hydration. Avoid using products containing irritants such as essential oils, perfumes and dyes for at least a week before your operation.

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the opinion of a health professional.