Smokers require special care when undergoing anesthesia for surgery, because smoking increases the
risks of problems. Anesthesiologists recommend that you stop smoking at least 24 hours before surgery. Within 12 hours of quitting, your heart and lungs start working better. The nicotine and carbon monoxide levels in your body get lower, improving blood flow and reducing the chances of problems. Quitting smoking also helps you get better faster.
Some problems, such as your surgical incision getting infected after surgery, can be avoided if you stop smoking now. For example, smokers who quit before orthopaedic surgery experience a dramatic decrease in the overall rate of complications after surgery, mainly caused by a decrease in the rate of wound infections.