NIGHT AFTER SURGERY
Temporary bruising, swelling and numbness are common the first night after surgery. You may need to go to the bathroom frequently during the night because of the IV fluids you were given during your surgery. Drink a lot of fluids in order to keep up with this fluid loss. As your body begins to balance itself out, it will rid itself of this extra “water weight and everything will return back to normal. You should leave all of your bandages intact overnight.
ONE DAY AFTER SURGERY
The next morning following your surgery, you will return to Dr Motykie’s office for your first post-operative visit. You should leave all bandages and dressings intact overnight and until you reach the office the following morning. Upon arrival to the office you will be escorted to a private examination room where your dressings will be changed and your operative sites will be evaluated. After your examination, you will be placed back into your chest compression garment and you will be allowed to return back to your home. All of your questions will be answered and you will be given instructions for the following week that will include the following:
You may feel tired and sore for several days following the surgery. Your chest will be swollen and tender. You will most likely be able to return to work within a few days depending on your job. Patients may shower the next day after surgery with care taken to not soak the sticky tapes over the incisions. Strenuous activity, particularly utilizing the chest and arms, will be restricted for the first week after surgery. Impact cardio exercise should be avoided for one to two weeks post-operatively. Weight lifting should be avoided for 3-4 weeks post-operatively and chest exercise should not begin until 4 weeks post-operatively. The resumption of and amount of physical /athletic activity should be guided by the level of patient discomfort with “pain” being the ultimate guide.
ONE WEEK AFTER SURGERY
The results of your surgery will typically be obscured by swelling and bruising at one week after surgery. Most patients can drive their vehicles within a few days after surgery, but plan on having someone drive you to your first few post-operative visits anyway. In regards to an exercise program, use common sense and use pain as your guide; if it hurts, simply don’t do it! The majority of patients are allowed to return to light, low impact cardiovascular exercise after the first week of recovery. Most patients return to work a few days after surgery.
During this time period, there may be some moderate pain, but it can typically be treated with your prescription pain medications. You may continue to experience some mild, periodic discomfort during this time, but such feelings are normal. Heavy lifting or straining should be avoided after surgery. You can typically return to work within a week and to full activity within a few weeks.
ONE MONTH AFTER SURGERY
Depending on the amount of physical exertion required to perform your expected duties, you should already be back into your normal rhythm at work. Exercise and workout routines may begin at this point in your recovery process. When you return to the activity, start at half speed and increase to your normal routine as long as you do not feel any pain during and/or the day after your workout. Although exercising will not adversely affect your end result, it may temporarily cause more swelling immediately after the exercise that will subside over the next few hours. The majority of my patients are back to their regular workout routine within a couple of weeks after their surgery.
LONG TERM RESULTS
All patients vary in their ability and speed to recovery after surgery but most commonly you can expect the final result from surgery to be evident at six months after surgery. During this time period, the chest will become less swollen and tender and the small scars near the areolas will typically begin to fade away to thin white lines.