Enhanced recovery after surgery FAQs

Frequently asked questions about your discharge and recovery at home.

Depending on your surgery you may be required to have blood thinning injections. These are normally given for 28 days after your operation. We will teach you how to give the injections yourself but if you are unable to do this, we will refer you to the District Nurses.

If required, you will be given two pairs of anti-embolism stockings to take home with you. You can remove the stockings to have a shower but we encourage you to wear them at all other times for 28 days after your operation.

It can sometimes take a few days for your bowels to start moving after an operation. This may be due to changes in your diet whilst in hospital and because you are not as mobile as you were before. You may be given some laxatives to take home with you.

If you find you are still struggling to move your bowels after a few days, see your GP or local pharmacist who will advise about stronger laxatives. Make sure you are drinking plenty of fluids and eat a well-balanced diet. If you feel unwell or are vomiting, please contact us.

The ward nurses should have inspected your wounds before you are discharged home. If the wounds are healing well, they will be left exposed to the air. You can have a shower but we advise against having baths until your wounds are completely healed. Dry your wounds thoroughly.

If you have any signs of infection such as redness, heat, pain and swelling around the wound sites, see your GP. You may have mild infection which may require antibiotics.

If you have had plastic surgery, you may be advised to keep your surgical dressings in place until you are seen in our plastics dressing clinic.

If you have completed the course of pain relief that was supplied to you on discharge, but still are experiencing some pain, contact your GP. Your GP will be aware of what tablets we discharged you with and, if required, they can supply you with some suitable replacements.

If you are experiencing new pain or your pain has increased significantly, please contact the Hotline or, if severe, visit your local Accident and Emergency.

If applicable, appointments for your TWOC (Trial without catheter) or for the dressings clinic should have been given to you prior to you leaving hospital. If you do not have this, please contact the ward.

Follow-up appointments to see the consultant and/or their team will be sent to you in the post. The timing of this will depend on your surgery and will be stated on your discharge letter. If you do not receive an appointment, please contact the appropriate secretary.