After Surgery Care
Having a post-surgery plan is important for a quick recovery and to get
you back to normal after surgery.
Follow your doctor’s activity level recommendations after you leave
the hospital. A nurse will contact you after your procedure to check in
and see how you are doing. Be sure to share any concerns or questions
you have. If you need home care after your procedure, your care team can
Arrange transportation with a friend or family member to bring you home
safely following your procedure. Sedation, anesthesia and/or pain mediation
may impair your ability to drive.
Speak to your physician about your post-surgery pain management plan. Be
sure any prescriptions you need filled are arranged for and plan to have
someone stay with you for 24 hours after your procedure even if you feel ok.
Post-Surgery Pain Management
After your surgery, you may be prescribed an opioid to help manage your
pain. It is important to understand how to safely use an opioid and to
understand the risks of opioid overuse.
You are the most important part of your healthcare team – ask questions
and know the facts before using opioids for pain.
Common names of opioids:
- Hydrocodone (Vicodin, Norco, Lortab)
- Oxycodone (Percocet, OxyContin)
- Morphine (MS Contin)
- Codeine (Tylenol #3, Tylenol #4)
- Tramadol (Ultram)
- Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
- Oxymorphone (Opana)
Questions to ask your health care provider before your surgery:
- How long should I expect to have pain?
- Can I use over-the-counter medications, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol)
or ibuprofen (Motrin, Aleve)?
- What other things can I do to help control my pain? (Ice, rest, elevate,
exercise, lifting or activity restrictions)
- Could I be a candidate for a nerve block, local anesthetic catheter or
an epidural as an opioid-sparing option?
- Who do I call if my pain is not controlled, getting worse or I am having
side effects from my opioids?
- Can I have fewer opioid pills because I have small children or teenagers
in the house?
Click here for more information about opioids and how to safely use them to manage pain.