After surgery, in our fully equipped Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU), commonly referred to as the Recovery Room, specially trained recovery room nurses will monitor and care for you while you wake up. The medical staff will discharge you when assured you are in stable condition. However, you could still feel sleepy, slightly dizzy, or nauseated. These are possible and normal side effects that can last for up to 12 hours.
Once stable, in the recovery room, a family member or friend may be with you during the recovery and discharge process. We encourage you to drink clear fluids during the recovery phase. Solid food is generally discouraged until after discharge to home, to minimize nausea and vomiting. Pain medication will be given as needed. Specific Discharge instructions will be reviewed with you and the responsible adult bringing you home. You will be discharged home when you are reasonably comfortable, awake and alert, pain is manageable and you have minimal nausea.
For 24 hours following surgery requiring anesthesia, do not drive, do not operate equipment, do not make any important decisions, do not sign any important papers, do not drink alcohol, and do not take any medications not prescribed or acknowledged by your doctor. You will be called by a surgical center nurse the next business day following your surgery.
Once home, please call your doctor if you experience any of the following:
- Persistent nausea and vomiting
- Fever over 101 degrees Fahrenheit orally
- Excessive pain
- Any unexpected bleeding or drainage from the wound
- Extreme redness or swelling around the incision
- Pronounced skin rash
- After spinal/epidural, a headache not relieved by Tylenol or similar non-aspirin medications
Always feel free to call your doctor with questions or problems at any time after your surgery. Your doctor’s telephone number is included on your Discharge Instructions. At night and on weekends, the doctor’s answering service will have a doctor return your call. Should an emergency arise, and you are unable to contact your doctor, you may call your nearest emergency room department or 911.