What should I expect post-operatively?

Patients are usually able to walk immediately after surgery and is in fact encouraged to do so 3 or 4 times per day for 1 to 2 minutes each time.  Usuall y however, they cannot stand up straight, and walk with a hunched posture. The skin of the abdomen will be quite tight and patients are usually instructed to remain bent over at least 45 degrees for the first 4 to 5 days after surgery.

Patients will often note some back discomfort due to the 45 degree positioning for 4 to 5 days after surgery - Surgeon sometimes give muscle relaxants or valium.

The drains are removed 4 to 14 days after surgery.  At the end of 4 days the patient may begin to straighten up and by six days post-op may or may not be fully straight.

You should not exert themselves for at least two weeks after surgery.  While the drains are in, bed rest with a very small amount of walking as outlined above is recommended.

If drains are requored for an extended amount of time, patients are notexpected to sit in bed all day.  An abdominal pressure garment may be given at a post-operative appointment. These are used for 3 o 6 weeks.

Some swelling and discoloration are normal but are generally minimal and  dependent upon the individual.