Consulting Surgeons

POST OPERATIVE INSTRUCTIONS - HERNIA REPAIR
UMBILICAL - VENTRAL - INCISIONAL

  1. Pain medication. You may have been prescribed one or both of the following pain medications:

    1. Celebrex. You may have been given this drug to start pre-operatively. Continue to take as directed until gone. Celebrex is a non-steroidal antiinflammatory (NSAID) that will help reduce your discomfort.
    2. Darvocet-N 100 or Vicodin. This is used for moderate pain, and should be taken according to directions. This is taken in addition to the Celebrex.

  2. Constipation. You may take a laxative if you are unable to move your bowels within 3 days after surgery. Dulcolax, Milk of Magnesia, and Fleet Enema are all acceptable laxatives. If you do not have results with these medications, then you may drink a bottle of Citrate of Magnesium which is available without a prescription. This will usually produce several bowel movements.

  3. Activity. You may be as active as long as you are comfortable including being outdoors and taking stairs. Do not drive until you are no longer taking prescription pain medications and are able to move your legs without hesitation. This is typically in 3-5 days. You may return to work as soon as you feel able, but this varies with the kind of work that is involved. It is safest to check with the doctor before returning to work

  4. Wound care. Your incision has been covered with a type of glue which appears as a semi-transparent film. No bandages are necessary. The film will slough by itself in 1-2 weeks. Do not take tub baths or swim until instructed by your doctor. You may shower. You may use an ice pack over the bandage or on top of your clothing for 20 minutes at a time 3 times a day for the first 2 days after surgery. If the incision becomes reddened or drains blood or other fluid after the first 48 hours, call the office for instructions.

  5. Drain care. There maybe a small silicone drain that functions to drain out the fluid which accumulates in the wound after surgery. The drain will stay in place anywhere from 3 -7 days. The nurses in the hospital will show you how to measure and empty the drainage. Record the amount of drainage that empties into the squeeze bottle on a daily basis,using the form to write down the date, time, and the amount. Try to do the measurements at the same time each day. Your doctor uses this information to determine when it is safe to remove the drain. If the drainage decreases to less than 10 cc over 24 hours, you may call the office and speak to a nurse regarding instructions for drain removal.

  6. Followup. When you get home from the hospital, call the office to schedule a follow-up visit about 3 days after the date of surgery. You may call at anytime with additional questions. Please keep track of how many prescription pain pills you take, and for how many days.

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Updated 5-18-06 Id

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