How You Might Feel After Your Operation

  • You may feel slightly nauseated, light-headed, dizzy or sleepy for 24 hours after anaesthetic.
  • You may have a slight temperature for 2 days
  • It is expected that your incision will be pink and slightly swollen or that there will be a small amount of oozing from your incision.
  • Bruising around the site of the incision.

Incision Care

  • An ice-pack may be applied to the site – 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off.
  • Movement may cause slight leakage from your incision. Check your dressing when you first arrive home to ensure there is no excessive fluid or bleeding.
  • Keep the incision clean and dry.
  • You may shower 24 hours after surgery as it keeps your incision clean and promotes healing – put on a clean dressing after your shower.
  • If the incision opens up, cover with a clean dressing and call your surgeon.
  • If you have bright red bleeding that soaks through your dressing, cover the dressing with a clean cloth, apply pressure with your hand and contact your surgeon.
  • If you have staples in, your surgeon will tell you when they should be removed.
  • Leave narrow strips on incision. They will eventually fall off.

Follow-Up Care

  • Contact your surgeon’s office to arrange for a follow-up appointment.

Pain and Medication

  • Your surgeon will provide a prescription for a pain reliever to take as needed.
  • Follow your surgeon’s advice on resuming your usual medications.
  • Take a mild laxative if necessary to prevent excessive straining.


  • Eat light foods for the first day, such as tea, toast, soup and Jello®. Drink extra fluids.
  • If diabetic, follow your surgeon’s instructions regarding diet and medication

For 24 hours after your surgery do not…

  • Drive a vehicle
  • Operate heavy equipment
  • Drink alcohol
  • Smoke
  • Make any important decisions

Activity and Exercise

  • Have a responsible adult stay with you for 24 hours.
  • Some fatigue can be expected for a few days after your operation.
  • The day after your surgery you will feel more able to be up and around – this will improve your circulation and help in your recovery.
  • No heavy lifting or straining for 2 weeks unless otherwise instructed by your surgeon.
  • Consult with your surgeon about resuming normal activities and returning to work.

You need to call your doctor if:

  • Your temperature is higher than 101°F or 38.5°C;
  • You have bright red bleeding from your incision;
  • You have more than a small amout of swelling around your incision;
  • You develop an infection, e.g., increased redness, swelling and pain at your incision and/or you develop a “smelly” discharge;
  • You develop nausea, vomiting, diarrhea which persists after 24 hours.
If you cannot contact your doctor, go to the nearest Emergency Department.
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