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After an Operation

The following is an outline of what you might expect after an operation.

On the way home:-

You will need someone to drive you home as it is against the law to drive within 24 hours of an anaesthetic. If you live close to the hospital where you have your operation, there will be few problems with the trip home. You should sit in the vehicle in the normal way and use the seat belt. Sitting across the seat or in an unusual position is not recommended. If you need to travel a longer distance, you should plan to split the trip into small stages. It may be sensible to stay overnight in Sydney if you have had a procedure as a day only patient.

At home:-

You should rest and allow time off from work and/or family to give the wounds a chance to heal without complications. Keeping the operated leg in a dependent position for long periods will lead to swelling and possibly to wound problems and/or bleeding. It is recommended that you rest and gently elevate your leg for at least 7 days; this may need to be even longer following a more major operation and Dr Sullivan will advise you.

Pain relief is important:-

Take simple medication such as Paracetamol. This can and should be taken every 4 to 6 hours, as long as you do not have any medical problems that mean that this is unsuitable for you. Pain relief should be taken regularly for the first day or two, even if you feel that the pain is well controlled, because keeping the pain at bay is easier than having to reduce it. You may be given a prescription for a stronger medication by the anaesthetist and it is useful and important to have this at hand. It is sensible to take the stronger medication before you go to bed and prepare for the night with a couple of tablets and a drink of water next to your bed. Pain is almost always worse at night. If the pain is not well controlled and you feel that you are not managing, you should let us know.

Contacting Us:-

During office hours
Contact us by phoning 02 9436 0073 during normal office hours.

Outside office hours
Outside office hours, please ring the hospital where your operation was done and tell the nursing supervisor of your problem. They will be able to give advice and contact Dr Sullivan on your behalf. He will then contact you as soon as practical.

Through Your GP:
If for some reason you are not able to contact Dr Sullivan about a problem or have seen your General Practitioner or perhaps even a Casualty Doctor, it is still very important that we are kept informed. As other doctors may not know the details of your therapy and indeed the specifics of each operative treatment, we need to know if there has been any problem or if any new medication (such as an antibiotic) has been started.

Remember, if we are not made aware of any issues you are having following your operation, we are unable to effectively assist you.