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After leaving the hospital
Pain Relief and your Medication
It is important that you maintain a comfortable level of function after you surgery. Depending on your operation, you may be comfortable with little requirement for pain relief, or you may not be comfortable and require moderate amounts of regular pain relief. We will assess your requirement prior to your hospital discharge and you will have a regimen to follow at home. If you have concerns about your pain relief, discuss this with the nursing staff, Dr Agolley, or his staff prior to your discharge. You may also see your GP if you have ongoing concerns at home.
Using an ice pack 20 minutes on and 20 minutes off at lease 6 times a day is beneficial for the first 2 weeks after your operation. Also, elevating your limb will help the swelling to decrease.
You may require a blood thinning medication in the form of a tablet or injection under the skin. You will be directed how to administer this prior to discharge.
Postoperative Rehabilitation and Activity at Home
During your hospital stay, you should receive instructions from your physiotherapist on what exercises you are to do at home, and what limitations you should abide by. You may require a short stay in a rehabilitation facility. If this is so, it will be arranged after your operation.
If you have concerns regarding your rehabilitation, please contact us.
Keep your surgical site clean and dry. Do not remove the dressings unless instructed to by Dr Agolley. Maintain a water proof dressing over the surgical site for the first 2 weeks, or until you see your GP or Dr Agolley. If your hospital dressing comes off, or you get it wet, then you may change it by using an antiseptic solution to dab gently over your surgical site, and reapply a waterproof dressing from the chemist.
Swelling may be normal for 2 weeks to 6 months after your operation. Let Dr Agolley know of any concerns on your postoperative visit. You may manage swelling by rest, ice, compression and elevation. Ice pack may be used 20 minutes on and at least 20 minutes off, 6 times a day in the initial 2 weeks period after your surgery. Do not put ice or the ice pack directly on your skin, wrap the ice pack in a thin towel to protect your skin from cold damage.
The common technique that Dr Agolley uses to suture wounds, is a cosmetically pleasing technique with a self-absorbing suture that does not need to be removed. You may need a small knot clipped at your 2-week review.
Occasionally, this method of closure is not possible, and multiple sutures of skin clips need to be removed. If sutures or clips need to be removed, we will let you know what needs to be done prior to your discharge from hospital.
Prevention of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
A deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a blood clot that forms in the veins of the leg. The clot may block a blood vessel, causing potentially serious health effects. A pulmonary embolism is a life-threatening complication of DVT.
It is therefore very important to undertake activities to Prevent of Deep Vein Thrombosis. It is also very important to monitor yourself for warning signs that may indicate the onset of Deep Vein Thrombosis.
For more information, please see the Australian NHMRC guidelines regarding clinical practice with respect to DVT Prevention. Multiple languages are supported.