Post-operative Pain Relief
Pain management after surgery is a very vital part in our practice. In collaboration with the pain team and our anesthetists we set up high standard protocols for each type of surgery based on the best evidence based medicine. Our nursing staff are very well trained to deliver these protocols in the most efficient manner. The goals of postoperative pain management are to enable you to be mobile and do your physical therapy with minimum pain and stress.
During the surgery we infiltrate the surgical site with local anesthetics which should last a few hours after surgery. Then you may get intravenous infusion of a pain killer which will be substituted gradually by injections through your intravenous line then changed to oral pain killers over the following few days. It is very important to have a good balance with regards to the amount you are given since these medications can cause drowsiness, nausea and vomiting. If an epidural block was used during your surgery, the epidural catheter can be left in place and anesthesia continued afterwards to help control pain. You will also have control over the amount of pain medication you receive, within preset limits.
During the first few days, while you are receiving the painkiller intravenously, you will be closely monitored to ensure minimising any adverse effects such as excessive sedation. We strongly believe that proper use of pain relievers before, during, and after your surgery is an extremely important aspect of your treatment. Proper use of pain medication can encourage healing and make your surgery a more satisfying experience. If you have sufficient pain relief then you will be able to breath and move your limbs better, which will decrease the chance of lung complications and deep venous thrombosis.
Like with any medications, there are some side effects such as, loss of appetite, nausea and constipation for a couple of days. These are ordinary reactions. You may have a urinary catheter inserted during surgery and be given stool softeners or laxatives to ease the constipation caused by the pain medication after surgery. You will also be taught to do breathing exercises to keep your chest and lungs clear.