Going Home after Hysterectomy
Mixed feelings about going home after surgery are normal. The noisy hustle and bustle of the hospital may make you long for your own bed. Yet, the thought of being at home without a skilled nursing staff a button push away can be daunting. Here are some tips that can help you manage the transition from hospital to home.
First, keep a notebook and pen handy in the hospital. You may be too groggy and weary to remember questions you have, so writing them down (or having someone write them for you) when you think of them is a great idea. You can also use it to write down any helpful instructions shared by the nursing staff. To help you manage your pain medications safely, you can also use your notebook to keep track of when you take your medications so you don’t accidentally take more or less than prescribed.
It’s also a good idea to have your advocate/caregiver with you to hear post-op instructions when you are being discharged. This can ensure that you and your caregiver understand them. Don’t hesitate to ask for clarification if you don’t understand something, or if you feel a topic wasn’t covered. You should be given the instructions in writing along with information about symptoms that warrant a call to the doctor and phone numbers to call for post-op appointments and emergencies.
Next, take any extra supplies the hospital offers you. If you are offered extra bandages, mesh panties, pads, or bed protectors, take them. You never know when these might come in handy before someone can go to the store for you.
TIPS FOR GOING HOME
1. Keep notebook and pen handy
2. Take everything home
3. Fill prescription for pain meds
4. Bring a pillow for your tummy
If you have a long ride home, the nurses may offer you nausea and pain medications as you leave the hospital. Using them will help you through the trip and hold you over until you can fill your post-op prescriptions. If your pharmacy has a drive-thru, it’s probably a good idea to drop off prescriptions on the way home. Once you are situated at home, your caregiver can then make a quick trip back to the pharmacy to pick up the filled prescriptions.
Finally, if your tummy is tender, put a small pillow between you and the seatbelt. Reclining the seat a teeny bit can also help, but resist the urge recline the seat all the way while the car is in motion—this can be very dangerous.
This content was written by staff of HysterSisters.com by non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support. Reprinted with permission: Going Home after Hysterectomy