You will see your physician approximately five to seven days following your surgery.
You can expect some drainage on your steri strips covering your incisions. Maximum discomfort will occur in the first few days after surgery, and most people are up and around in 3-5 days.
You may become constipated due to the pain medications and should begin a stool softener (i.e. Colace) after surgery. In addition, you may want to add a fiber supplement (Metamucil, Citrucel, etc.) after tolerating a diet to decrease straining. If you have gone several days without a bowel movement and are feeling uncomfortable, you may want to consider using a glycerin suppository or Fleet’s enema (available at all drug stores).
You may have sporadic, shooting pains for several months. This is normal and caused by your nerve fibers or underlying stitches.
WHAT TO DO
Take frequent short walks to help your circulation and to decrease the risk of blood clot formation in the legs. Walking also helps your breathing. Take frequent deep breaths. Drink abundant clear fluids. You may eat solids if you are hungry – light fare at first.
Do not take your pain medications on an empty stomach. Eat a light snack, such as crackers, about 30 minutes before you take your medication.
Refrain from sleeping on your stomach. Sleep elevated on your back until your first postop appointment unless otherwise directed by your doctor.
Do not drive or operate machinery while you are taking your narcotic pain medication. If you are still taking narcotics by the time of your first postop appointment, then have someone drive you to your appointment.
You may shower the day after surgery. Blot dry the dressings covering your incisions. If the dressings and/or steri-strips come off, dress the wound with antibiotic ointment (Polysporin). Do not tub bathe until cleared by your doctor to do so.
After surgery, you may wear any type of bra that does not have underwire. You may return to wearing an underwire bra at around 6 weeks postop.
Do not lift weights more than 25 pounds, and avoid using a vacuum cleaner for about three weeks. When you are released to exercise always wear a sports bra. You will be released to get your heart rate up at roughly three weeks depending on your personal healing and progression, and then slowly return to your normal exercise regimen. Chest exercises will be the last activities to begin again.
No heavy lifting (>25 lbs), vigorous activity, or straining for three weeks.
No tub bathing until cleared by your physician
No use of heating pads.
Do not apply ice directly to skin, as you may still have numbness to areas.
WHEN TO CALL
If you develop severe shortness of breath of chest pain- call 911, then notify physician
If you run a fever, or have chills- call our office
If you have markedly increased pain, bruising, swelling, or bloody drainage- call our office
If you develop leg swelling or calf pain- call our office
If you have persistent nausea or vomiting- call our office
If you are uncertain about a medication or treatment – call our office
If you are experiencing any adverse symptoms or changes that you do not understand- call our office