The Royal College of Anaesthetists (RCOA) advises smokers undergoing surgery to quit a minimum of six weeks before a surgery. However, stopping smoking at any time prior to surgery is likely to be beneficial.
RCOA considers quitting smoking to be essential before undergoing surgery as there is strong evidence that smokers who undergo anaesthesia and surgery, have a higher risk of heart and lung complications, wound infections, poor wound healing, intensive care admission and longer hospital stay.
Chewing gum stimulates salivation and can increase gastric fluid volume or acidity. Hence we recommend that patients should abstain from chewing gum for 6 hrs before anaesthesia and surgery.