Stress and anxiety can be a pretty common experience as you recover. There are a lot of things going on as you heal and your body begins to return to normal. You may feel a twinge of unexpected pain or notice swelling or bruising in an area that was fine before. These symptoms, whether they are normal or not, can seriously elevate your level of anxiety. It is very easy to imagine the worst possible scenario without truly knowing what is going on with your body.
We want you to know that we are here for you and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Don’t ever feel embarrassed to call, regardless of whether you just have one simple question or 100 questions! Stress can hinder your recovery, and anxiety will make it harder to return to your normal activities. We want you to be calm and comfortable during your recovery period so you can get back to your life as soon as possible.
While not all situations necessitate a call to the doctor, there a few scenarios that should have you picking up the phone pronto.
*IMPORTANT* If you are experiencing severe pains, fever or shortness of breath, go to the hospital or contact your surgeon. These conditions could be the signs of something very serious and you should see a doctor immediately. If it is the middle of the night or on the weekend, do not wait until Monday to speak to your surgeon. Go to the ER to be checked.
You cannot remember specific aftercare instructions.
It happens and we totally understand! There are a lot of things going through your mind during your pre-op and post-op visit with the doctor. It is hard to remember everything the doctor says. We will give instructions and papers to take home, but if you are still not sure, give us a call. It is also a good idea to have a family member or friend present during these visits to help you to remember.
You notice an area of the incision that looks different from the rest.
While it is normal for your incisions to heal at varying rates and look slightly different, you should call the doctor immediately if you notice a discharge, bad odor, redness, warmth or bleeding in any area of your incision. It is always better to call rather than waiting, so that way the doctor can ease your mind that everything is ok or begin the necessary treatment so you can get better.
You want to begin an activity but you are not sure if you can.
It is important not to overdo it when it comes to physical activity after surgery. Your body needs time to recuperate fully before you begin your normal exercise routine. If you are getting anxious to go for a run or hit the gym but you are not sure if it is the right time, please contact us. You don’t want to assume it is ok and cause a setback in your recovery. You should also call if you are unsure about when to return to work or any vigorous activity.
You have a “gut feeling” that something isn’t right.
Trust your inner intuition! If you are just not feeling “right” or you are feeling a lot of fatigue and achiness, you should seek medical attention. A lot of times we do not physically see a problem but our bodies will give us signs that it needs help. Don’t doubt what your body is telling you! It is always better to be safe. We can assess your condition over the phone and let you know if you should see the doctor, or we can give you suggestions for different things you can do at home to help you bounce back faster.
Our staff is committed to making your experience as exceptional as possible. If you get home from your appointment and realize you forgot to tell us something, give us a call! We are happy to hear from you! If you have questions and concerns, please call! We want to make sure you understand your procedure and recovery process thoroughly.
It can be difficult to make a decision, especially one that involves surgery, without knowing all the facts. That is why our surgeons schedule pre-op consultations so our patients can ask as many questions as they would like and we can offer our expertise. You can contact us today for a consultation!
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