An Operation or Surgery at Children's Hospital Colorado


Know You Are in the Best Hands

No matter how simple or complex your child’s operation will be, we understand how you may feel: No procedure is small when it’s your child. But, while it might be foreign to you, at Children's Hospital Colorado, we perform nearly 14,000 surgeries each year. Everyone on our staff is specially trained to meet the needs of your child and your family. Rest assured, you are in the best hands.

Prepare Your Family

The best way to prepare is to know as much as possible about what will happen and to share that information, in an appropriate way, with your child and his or her siblings. You’ll want to know about the procedure, how to find your way around the hospital, all about your child’s condition or illness, and more. Your family will want to know what to expect, too, so we’ve provided some hints and tips for talking to them.

Watch the surgery videos with your child

Watch video on YouTube
The video below helps you understand what to expect from surgery.

Watch video on YouTube
The video below helps you understand how to prepare for surgery

At Children's Hospital Colorado, we’ve found a tour can greatly relieve anxiety before surgery, for parents and kids.

  • Research your child’s illness or condition and operation

Children's Hospital Colorado is home to one of the area’s best health libraries: the Melvin and Elaine Wolf Foundation Family Health Library. Located on the first floor of the hospital, the library has information on illnesses, wellness and parenting and in-depth research on medical conditions. Staff librarians are on hand to help you find exactly what you need.

  • Take care of yourself, too

Don’t underestimate the toll stress and worry can take on you. Spend time with family and friends, sharing your feelings. Make sure you are well rested and well fed—your child will be counting on you for support and comfort.

  • Get in touch with other parents

Talk to parents whose children have also had operations. They can help prepare you for what’s ahead and offer the support you may need at this time. Taking a surgery preparation tour of the hospital is a great way to meet other parents who share your experiences.

  • Plan a great homecoming celebration

Involve your child, the rest of the family and, if you like, a friend or two. Let your child know how exciting it will be to come home. Pick a special movie or meal, let siblings decorate the house and concentrate on how fun it will be to have everyone home together.

Prepare Yourself

Our experience has shown the more parents know about what to expect, the better parents and kids will feel. If you are nervous or frightened, your child will pick up on it. So, do everything you can to feel as confident and calm as possible.

  • Understand your child’s condition and surgical care

Ask your child’s surgeon or family doctor to help explain your child’s condition, the procedure and what to expect. These questions can help get the conversation started:

  • Why is this operation necessary?
  • How long will my child be in the hospital?
  • How will anesthesia be given?
  • Will my child need oxygen or an IV?
  • How will pain be controlled?
  • How will my child look and feel after the operation?
  • What type of home care will my child require following surgery? For how long?