Name: My First SurgeryImage result for My first surgery app

Age/Developmental Stage: Preschool-Early School Age

Available for these devices: iOS

Cost: Free!


Many children and families may  feel anxious and unsure about what to expect for a first-time surgery experience. Designed by a practicing pediatric surgeon from Montreal Children’s Hospital in Pediatric General Surgery, this app allows you and your child to explore the operating room environment at your own pace. You can learn about the process of preparing for an operation, meet the people that work there and learn what to expect in the recovery room and at home.

Several features on the app include:

– “Child view” with 5 easy-to-use scenes featuring interactive characters and equipment;
– “Parent View” providing tips and information every parent should know prior to the date of surgery;
– Your child’s picture can be embedded within the app for a personalized experience;
– Embedded videos by a practicing pediatric surgeon provide additional information about what to expect.
– French and English versions available (loads automatically depending on iPad language settings)

This app is effective as a preparation tool for parents, healthcare professionals, and Child Life Specialists to use when discussing the topic of first-time surgery. This can also be used for patients who may have had prior surgeries, but no recollection of the process or experiences. This can also assist parents and other healthcare professionals with understanding the developmentally appropriate language for talking about surgery.

As always, it is important to discuss with the medical team for more specific surgery questions and options for your own experience!