ROUTINE POSTOPERATIVE INSTRUCTIONS
What to expect after surgery:
You need to go straight home after the procedure is performed and you are discharged
from the hospital.
You may resume light duty tomorrow.
No heavy lifting greater than 25 lbs for 2-6 weeks.
Upon discharge, you will be able to tolerate regular diet.
(Your surgeon will advise specifics.)
(You may be given more specific dietary instructions upon discharge by your
You may shower the day after surgery.
No baths for 2 weeks.
You may drive when you are not on narcotics and able to slam on the brakes without
You may wish to try this in your driveway to simulate a sudden traffic stop.
It is our practice not to call in narcotics after 5pm or on weekends. So, please
make plans accordingly.
You will get ample narcotics upon discharge.
Should you need further narcotics please call the office to return earlier for
Bowel movements every day or every other day should be expected but, constipation
can be frequent.
You may use
o MiraLax 17 grams by mouth daily or twice a day to stimulate bowel movements,
o milk of magnesia 30 cc by mouth every 4 hours as an alternative,
o and/or Dulcolax suppository twice a day may stimulate desired effect.
You will have small band-aid like dressings. Try to keep these in place until day 2 or 3.
However, if they fall off it is okay and no further treatment is required.
They usually will fall off on their own within 5-7 days. If they are bothersome you
may peel them off after day 2.
You should have a post-op follow up appointment after discharge. This is usually for 1-2
weeks. If you do not have one please call the office to arrange one at 256-386-1125.
Some bleeding (oozing) may be normal.
If present, hold pressure for approximately 10-15 minutes over site and usually
this will take care of troublesome bleeding.
You should return earlier or call the office/on call surgeon if:
Increased pain at incision not relieved by medication but, not so troublesome that an ER
visit is warranted.
Increased drainage from incision or foul smelling purulent drainage is noted.
Fever greater than 100.5.
Nausea or vomiting.
Constipation not relieved by MiraLax, milk of magnesia, or Dulcolax for greater than 2-3
Slight increase in abdominal pain or distention.
You should report to the ER immediately if:
Shortness of breath or chest pain.
Fever greater than 101 without response to antipyretics (Tylenol, ibuprofen, etc.)
Intractable nausea and vomiting with inability to hold down liquids.
Hypotension, dizziness, excessive fatigue, worsening abdominal pain despite adequate
Bleeding not controlled with direct pressure or substantial bleeding.