Frequently Asked Questions
Is there anything special I need to do before surgery?
Please relax and get a good night sleep. Stop aspirin or blood thinners as directed by your surgeon. During the day before surgery drink plenty of water so you are not dehydrated the next day when an IV is placed. Do not eat or drink anything after midnight before the day of your surgery. It is OK to take your blood pressure medicine with a sip of water on the morning of your surgery.
I lost my colonoscopy prep. What do I do?
Click for Suprep Instructions
Nausea and Vomiting: Could be related to anesthesia or a new medication you were prescribed. The anesthesia medicines will be out of your system in 24 hours. Pain medication on an empty stomach or if taken regularly and not for pain can cause nausea and vomiting. Always take pain medication with food and only for the pain you feel. Hold off on eating, drinking, or taking medications for three hours after vomiting. Start slow with water and see how things go. If the vomiting persists, please call the office.
Constipation: Tends to be related to pain medication. Stop prescription pain medication if you can. Take Miralax 17 grams in 8 oz. of water a day while on pain medications to keep you regular. If you have not had a bowel movement in three days, take 1/2 bottle of Magnesium Citrate or 60 ml of Milk of Magnesia. This should be effective in 8 hours. Initiate a liquid diet until you have a bowel movement.
Diarrhea: In general, we have no issue with frequent bowel movements. After intestinal surgery this is a better condition then constipation. Diarrhea can be related to antibiotic usage and if so, yogurt or a probiotic would be reasonable to take. Post-operative diarrhea usually lessons in time on its own. Do not take over the counter anti-diarrheal medications. If diarrhea persists for more than 2 days, call the office.
Fever: It is not uncommon to have a low-grade temperature in the first three days after general anesthesia. We recommend coughing, deep breathing and walking to reinflate your lungs. Tylenol can be taken to treat low grade fevers. Temperatures > 101.5 are concerning and deserve a call to the office.
Shoulder Pain: This is referred pain due to irritation of the diaphragm from the gas insufflated in your abdominal cavity during a laparoscopic surgery. Your shoulder was not injured while you were under anesthesia. Best treated with a heating pad to the back and walking. This pain will go away in 48-62 hours.
Uncontrolled Pain: Make sure you are taking the prescription pain medication as prescribed by your surgeon. If your pain is not controlled with the narcotic, you can take Motrin or Advil three times a day with meals. Ice pack to the incision can decrease pain and inflammation. Pain after breast surgery can be minimized by wearing a sports bra around the clock to minimize movement of the breast.
Penile/scrotal swelling and bruising: This can occur after an inguinal hernia repair. It is do to bleeding from the surgical site after surgery and the blood shifts through the tissues down to the penis and scrotum with gravity. There are no major blood vessels in this area and the bleeding will stop on its own. Briefs or a jock strap that provides good support in this area will minimize swelling.
Incisions: Do not use any product on the incision until the glue, tape or clips are removed. We recommend Vitamin E oil to the incision twice a day to minimize the scar. Ridges and raised red scars will diminish in time and smooth out. It takes 6 months for the incision to mature into its final form. Notify you surgeon if the incision becomes red, irritated or drains pus. A small amount of bleeding or clear drainage from the incision initially is normal. Keep a clean bandage on the incision if this happens.
- Glue: Glue will come off in 1-2 weeks. Do not pull it off. OK to shower and get incision wet.
- Steri-strips: White tape on an incision will stay in place for at least 10 days. Do not pull off the tape. OK to shower and get incision wet.
- Staples: Skin clips will be removed in the office after 10 days. OK to shower and get incision wet.
Biopsy Results: Pathology results are obtained by the office in 3 -5 days after surgery, not including weekend days. We will contact you with the results or discuss them with you on your first follow-up visit.
Drains: If present, strip the drain daily to prevent clogging of the tube. Keep drain site dry. Apply antibiotic ointment around the drain site on the skin, two times a day. Empty drain daily or when the bulb is full and keep records of daily output. The drain will be removed in the office when there is less than 20 ml out a day.
Follow-up: Your surgeon will want to see you after surgery to examine your incision and make sure you are making the expected recovery from your surgery. Call to schedule an appointment in the office for 7-10 days after surgery. Phone 972.722.3290.
Medical Question: If you have any questions or concerns before your follow-up appointment, please call the office for assistance at 972.722.3290.
Specific Post-Operative Instructions: (Click item for printable instructions)