How will I feel after my surgery?

  • You may feel slightly nauseated after surgery.
  • You may feel light-headed, dizzy or sleepy for 24 hours after an anaesthetic.
  • You may have a slight temperature for two (2) days.
  • It is normal to have a slightly red, swollen incision.
  • It is normal to have a small amount of oozing from pink to dark red from your incision.

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 amount of swelling around your incision;
  • You have changes in your circulation if you had an operation on your limbs, such as a change in colour from normal to white or blue, or persistent numbness or tingling in the limb;
  • 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, diarrhoea that persists after 24 hours.
If you cannot contact your doctor, go to the nearest Emergency Department.

For 24 hours after surgery:

  • Do not drive
  • Do not operate heavy equipment
  • Do not drink alcohol
  • Do not smoke
  • Do not make any important decisions

How should I care for myself after my surgery?

  • Nutrition: eat light foods for the first day, such as tea, toast, soup or Jello® and drink extra fluids.
  • If you are diabetic, follow your doctor’s orders for diet and medication.

Activity and Exercise:

  • Have a responsible adult stay with you for 24 hours.
  • You will need to rest for a few days following your surgery.
  • Avoid any activity that strains the area of your surgery.
  • Ask your surgeon when it is safe to return to your regular activities and work.


  • Your surgeon will tell you when you may have a bath or shower and wash your hair.


  • Take only the medication for pain that your surgeon prescribes.
  • Follow your surgeon’s order about when to start taking your routine medications.

Surgical Area:

  • Use elastic stockings or bandages as ordered by surgeon.
  • Keep area clean and dry.
  • If the incision opens up, cover with a clean dressing and call your doctor.
  • If you start to have bright red bleeding that soaks through your dressing, put a clean cloth over the incision, apply pressure with your hand and call your surgeon.
  • If you have stitches, your surgeon will tell you if and when they should be removed.

Follow-Up Care:

  • Make a follow-up appointment with your surgeon in 7-10 days.
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