You’ll be given a time and place to check in for your operation and it’s in your best interests to show up at the right place and on-time. They should be able to give you an idea of the roll call for that day and where you fit in to the schedule.  You’ll then be taken to a private room for more height, weight, blood pressure and temperature readings before slipping out of your civvies and donning your regulation hospital couture (anti-embolism stockings, paper undies, rear opening gown and wrist tags).

If you’re lucky, the anaesthetist will stop by with more forms to sign and as a reward give you a pre-med (tranquiliser) to keep you calm before you go to theatre. Once that’s had time to work its magic and you’re feeling warm and fuzzy, they’ll come to collect you and you have to say goodbye to your loved ones (and your beloved boob(s)) knowing from this point you’re on your own.  This is probably one of the worst and loneliest points of the whole journey.

Once through those double doors you’ll see the smiling faces of your surgeon and anaesthetist and several other people who are milling around in the background to lend a hand.  An IV will be put into your hand and then you’ll head into theatre – one last look up at the kind faces and bright lights as you feel the rush of anaesthetic rise up your arm and then its off to who knows where…….(well, for you anyway).

‘Bye bye boobies’…or some other nonsensical drivel is probably what you’ll be aware of next as you wake up to a kindly nurse in recovery (btw the drivel is most likely from you and not the kindly nurse).  Everything will probably still be fuzzy and warm and the kindly nurse will have the halo of an angel along with everything else in the room.  You’ll be pretty drugged up at this point but may still feel some discomfort – if you can communicate through the drivel – tell whoever is nearby if you feel too much pain – now is not the time to be stoic.

With surgery by its nature being rather intrusive, you’ll receive some heavy duty pain relief to manage your discomfort.  This can have the unwanted side effect of making you nauseous, very drowsy and not able to string a sentence together very well – very much like a few too many sherbets.  With this in mind try not to amass too much of a post-surgery posse as you’ll be feeling pretty rough and need to rest – just your nearest and dearest will be plenty.