Postoperative pain or pain that one would experience after surgery is very common and natural. There can be many stages to the healing process and whilst some of these can be scary, it is important to know that these are stages of natural healing and that it takes time. Here are some great tips to help you relieve any pain that you might be feeling after surgery.
Know the stages of healing
Your knee specialist will make sure that you are aware of the stages of healing and the time that it would roughly take, given that you follow all instructions correctly, before you are discharged from the hospital. There will be some amount of generalized pain that will present on and off for even several weeks, depending upon the extent of the procedure. Your swelling will be present for about 2 or 3 weeks but in some cases it can be present even for 3 or 6 months. The bruising that you see will remain present for at least 1 or 2 weeks after surgery.
What happens after surgery?
As soon as you finish your procedure, it is likely that your orthopedic surgeon will use Novocain in the joint to relieve pain. After this painkillers will can be administered orally or intravenously will be given to you. Most of the time, these are high power opioids or opiates which will be gradually reduced in dosage.
Swelling is a very normal part of healing and is your body’s natural coping and defense mechanism. You can adhere to the exercises that have been given to you in order to minimize the swelling and reduce the duration of recovery time. Keeping your leg elevated for at least a couple of hours in the afternoon daily will help you manage the swelling better. You also will need to purchase an ice pack. They will come in handy when you need to reduce the inflammation and swelling around the site of surgery. It is a good idea to use these ice packs at least 4 times daily for about 20 minutes each time.
This is another natural part of the body healing itself and will look like a deep purple mark around the site of surgery. This discolouration will gradually reduce and is quite normal because of the trauma that the joint has been through during the correction process. Elevating your leg can help with this and so can icing.
Treatments at home
You will be asked to wear compression stockings while your mobility is restricted, especially in the hospital and the several weeks immediately after. Even though it might be uncomfortable the stocking reduce chances of blood clots which is very important. Various pain relieving creams and even patches can help alleviate the pain and help you be more comfortable. Make sure you complete your rehabilitation and physiotherapy and you will back to normal in no time.