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Anxiety Medication Before Surgery??



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Hello Everyone!

I am scheduled for VSG on 11/9! I am so excited but also nervous. I have hypertension- which worsens when I experience high anxiety. My blood pressure has been running in the normal range thanks to multiple BP meds. However, I am worried that surgery day anxiety will spike my BP and interfere with my ability to have the procedure. Just curious if other people have had experiences with getting prescribed a PRN anxiety medication for the day of surgery. I have my pre-op appointment next week but I would love to hear other peoples experiences. Thank you in advance!

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Hi Hailey,

I also had hypertension (notice that past tense there!).

The day before your surgery, your hospital coordinator will call you to give you specific instructions (wash with antibacterial soap, nothing by mouth after midnight, etc.) and should go through your list of medications and tell you which to take the day of surgery and which not to take. Some of them, like losartan/Cozaar, interfere with anesthesia.

Your anesthesiologist has ways to control your blood pressure, so I wouldn't worry overmuch about your anxiety spiking your BP. I was as anxious as all get out and scored a super-awesome 🙄 145/87 even on amlodipine the morning of surgery, and things went just fine.

But here is the awesome news: my PCP told me to take one more dose of the losartan with hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) the day after surgery since the HCTZ is a Water pill and would help me pee out the surgical Fluid. That was the last time I took that pill—the day after surgery.

Within two weeks, I was on half my dose of amlodipine, and my doctor said to take my BP every morning and if it was below 130/80, don't take the half-dose.

I haven't taken it in a week and a half, and my blood pressure has remained firmly below those numbers.

So it can happen very fast.

I would speak to your psychiatrist to ensure that the anti-anxiety med you're on isn't some kind of extended-release thing. Your medication won't stay in your digestive tract long enough for extended-release medications to work. I had to be switched from Wellbutrin XL (which I realize is not an anti-anxiety med...) to Wellbutrin IR... and then the dose was halved.

You will be totally fine.

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1 hour ago, vikingbeast said:

Hi Hailey,

I also had hypertension (notice that past tense there!).

The day before your surgery, your hospital coordinator will call you to give you specific instructions (wash with antibacterial soap, nothing by mouth after midnight, etc.) and should go through your list of medications and tell you which to take the day of surgery and which not to take. Some of them, like losartan/Cozaar, interfere with anesthesia.

Your anesthesiologist has ways to control your blood pressure, so I wouldn't worry overmuch about your anxiety spiking your BP. I was as anxious as all get out and scored a super-awesome 🙄 145/87 even on amlodipine the morning of surgery, and things went just fine.

But here is the awesome news: my PCP told me to take one more dose of the losartan with hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) the day after surgery since the HCTZ is a Water pill and would help me pee out the surgical Fluid. That was the last time I took that pill—the day after surgery.

Within two weeks, I was on half my dose of amlodipine, and my doctor said to take my BP every morning and if it was below 130/80, don't take the half-dose.

I haven't taken it in a week and a half, and my blood pressure has remained firmly below those numbers.

So it can happen very fast.

I would speak to your psychiatrist to ensure that the anti-anxiety med you're on isn't some kind of extended-release thing. Your medication won't stay in your digestive tract long enough for extended-release medications to work. I had to be switched from Wellbutrin XL (which I realize is not an anti-anxiety med...) to Wellbutrin IR... and then the dose was halved.

You will be totally fine.

Thank you so much for the reassuring response! It’s so much to process but I’m really excited for this positive change in my life!

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I got a very low dose of Xanax for the night before surgery. I was extremely anxious in the lead up to surgery - such a hot mess at my pre-op appt with the doctor and the anesthesiologist. The latter is who recommended I get a low dose from my surgeon so I could get some good sleep and be calm the morning of surgery. I also have high blood pressure but that wasn't the reason for the meds. I was just a mess, mentally.

Best. Choice. Ever. I got a good night's sleep, and the morning of surgery I was calm. If you are concerned you won't get sleep or being a mess, consider it. I literally took half of the lowest dose and that was enough.

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I would ask the surgeon about what’s best to take. There is no reason for you to go into surgery all worried about anything. Not when there are meds to help.

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I live in Belgium and it’s a really normal thing here to get a ‘chill pill’ as soon as you get taken to your room before surgery, so I don’t see why that would be anything but an ordinary question! Taking some the day before to sleep better because of health conditions sounds like a very responsible decision. Just make sure your anaesthesiologist knows about it too. 😊

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