Our patients are what our practice is all about. The links on this page are designed to be informative. You will find general information about planning for and recovering from surgery. There is also a page of our patients’ feedback to us. This is where you can get an idea of what it is like to receive your care in our office. And of course, there is the photo gallery so you can see before and after views of some of the surgeries I perform.
Hopefully, this information peaks your interest. If so, great and I look forward to meeting you in person.
Planning For Your Surgery
First Two Weeks
The days following your surgery will require rest, patience and careful attention to what your body needs. You can expect that the first night will be uncomfortable, and you will likely doze on and off with the effects of the pain medication, but will not sleep fully. You will visit the office on the first day after surgery. During that visit, all of your dressings will be changed. We will also review your pain management, dietary information and any other questions you may have.
It is very common to feel as if you had “been hit by a truck” at about 4pm of the first day after surgery. At this time of day, your body’s natural cortisol levels drop preparing you to rest for the night. This drop often coincides with the time that the long lasting pain medications given to you in the recovery room directly after the surgery wear off. So the effects of having surgery may hit you. Don’t worry, this is normal. Take your pain medication and by the next day you will start to feel better.
Remember that the first week after surgery is all about taking care of yourself. This is the time to pay attention to what your body needs. You need to lie down as soon as you are tired and eat as soon as you are hungry. This is not the time to clean that closet you have been waiting to attack or catch up on the office work on your computer. I do not want you involved in tasks that will distract you from your healing body. I do not want you to over-do. However, you are not on bed rest; get up, move around the house, eat in the kitchen if you feel like it, take a gentle walk around the block. Do not cook family meals, clean the house, take care of the kids, do the laundry or the supermarket shopping. Rest and eat.
It is expected that by the second week after surgery we will be liberalizing your activities.
Postoperative nutrition is important. Two eggs or 4 egg whites and two pieces of citrus fruit a day will deliver enough animal protein and vitamin C to heal the wound. Include these in your post operative diet and eat as you need in addition. Food is better than supplements.
The above is provided as general information only and not meant to be used as postoperative instructions for the general public. When you are a patient in the office, you will receive personalized information and preoperative and postoperative instructions based on your needs and the recovery needs of your specific procedure.
Planning for surgery means just that, setting aside the time required to heal well from your procedure. The following is a guideline of what to expect. Once you and I are working together to plan your specific procedure more detailed recommendations will be provided. In general then:
When Can I Drive?
You will not be able to drive immediately after the surgery. You can start driving when two conditions are met:
- You must be off all narcotic pain medication.
- Your surgical site no longer presents a restriction to the movement of your neck and eyes (if you have had facial surgery) or a distraction from the seatbelt across your surgical site (with body or breast surgery) The impact of visual restrictions is obvious. The seatbelt across a surgical site can make you hesitate before slamming on the breaks, the half-second difference between having or avoiding an accident.
We will work together to determine when it is safe to drive based on the above.
When Can I Shower?
You can shower 24 hours after your last drain is removed. If you do not have drains, you will be able to shower after your first post-operative visit.
When Can I Exercise?
We will work together on returning to your exercise plan. Gentle walking is ok immediately after surgery. Vigorous exercise will be restricted for several weeks up to a month depending upon the type of surgery you have had and how you heal. We will work together to get you back to your usual activities as soon as you are ready.
- Fill the prescriptions given to you at the pre-operative visit. Have these medications already at home by the day of your surgery.
- Have plenty of options for soft, starchy comfort foods for the first day or so after surgery. You will need to eat something before each dose of pain medication, but may not be really hungry. Toast, crackers, rice, bananas, oatmeal, cottage cheese, vanilla pudding may be good options.
- Have different beverage options at home prior to surgery. Becoming dehydrated after surgery can increase symptoms of nausea and headache. You are not expected to chug 8 oz. at a time, but I do want you to sip constantly to make sure you get enough fluids.
- Have old towels ready to sleep on to protect your sheets from any wound drainage during the first night after surgery.
- Again, the above represents guidelines only. A more detailed and specific plan will be provided to you as we work together on an individual basis.