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Medication/Pain Management

Most surgical patients ask about the amount of pain they can expect after surgery and what can be done to manage that pain.

You will have some pain after surgery as your wound heals. If you are an inpatient, you may receive continuous pain medication, such as pain pills or injections, for the first 24-hours following surgery. We also control your pain through comfort measures such as ice, range-of-motion, elevation and repositioning.

After the first 24-hours, intravenous (IV) or pain pill therapies are available. Ask your nurse for pain medication, especially before the physical therapist works with you.

Pain medications also include:

  • Home medications -- while you are in the hospital, the physician orders these medications to be continued as at home. Please bring your medications with you.
  • Antibiotics -- post-surgery, you may be given a few more doses through your IV line as ordered by the physician.
  • Activity -- your activity level increases as you regain your strength.
  • Urinary catheter -- this will be removed the first or second day after surgery. You will be helped to the bathroom or bedside commode.
  • Diet -- the IV remains in place until the ordered antibiotics are given. Once you are awake enough, you are allowed to have ice chips, sips of 7-Up or water and a clear liquid diet, including Jello, juice, tea and 7-Up. We ask you to begin taking these liquids slowly to make sure your stomach is settled from the anesthesia. Please let your nurse know if you become nauseated. Medication to control nausea can be ordered.