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What to expect the first week home? What to expect the first week home?

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  #1  
Unread 01-17-2009, 07:03 AM
What to expect the first week home?

Hi, ladies! Further to my last post about DH's worries about me being home alone during the day after I retrun from hospital, I've decided to get some advice about the best way to plan for Week 1.

I'm not someone who likes to stay in my actual bed when sick, so my hope is to come down the stairs in the am (when someone is here) and lay around on the couch, where I then have access to a bathroom and the kitchen on the main floor. Is this realistic, or, with pain meds in the first week, am I better off in bed? Any feedback is most appreciated and will reasure hubby that I'm doing the right thing. Thanks!
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  #2  
Unread 01-17-2009, 07:13 AM
What to expect the first week home?

you definitely dont need to be in bed. getting up and moving will help you recover faster. you can relax on the couch and get up, go into the kitchen and get yourself something to eat, walk around the house (i think i've read where women have been told to walk 10 min every hour). i've always found that the more i'm up and in my normal routine, the better i feel. i've always been on my own after all my surgeries and have never had a problem.
  #3  
Unread 01-17-2009, 07:55 AM
What to expect the first week home?

I think that a lot depends on the type of surgery you are having, if there are any complications and if you need pain meds once you are home.

I had a TAH with a very large vertical incision, but did not need any pain meds. I found that for the first couple of weeks I felt better resting in bed, the couch was not comfortable for me. My DH took two weeks off just in case, but by the end of the first week I could have easily stayed home by myself as my mobility got better.

That being said, if I was home alone I would definitely have stayed on the main floor for convenience sake. Just make sure that everything is within reach and you do not have to do any bending, reaching or lifting.

Remember to pamper the

Good luck and best wishes for a speedy and healthy recovery.
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  #4  
Unread 01-17-2009, 08:19 AM
What to expect the first week home?

I was really lucky that I had company for the first 4 weeks post op but I am sure that I could have managed on my own much sooner during the day.

I probably would make sure that I was downstairs before DH leaves in the morning for the first couple of days incase you are unsteady and I wouldn't shower alone in the house for the first week.

Make sure that you have easy access to snacks and drinks and that you have everything you need close by.

I did try to walk for about 10 minutes every hour even if it was slow laps around the room. This really helped with the gas pains and BM's. I was only taking anti inflammatories and ibuprofen after I got home.

When getting yourself up from the couch use your arms rather than your tummy muscles.

And have a cell phone in your pocket at all times with numbers to call just incase of an emergency (my neighbours were my first point of call).

Wishing you a safe surgery and uneventful recovery
  #5  
Unread 01-17-2009, 10:36 AM
What to expect the first week home?

I stayed in bed rather than on the couch simply because it kept me away from the noises of my family and helped me rest better. I did go downstairs for most of my meals, though. I had a vaginal hysterectomy, and walking up and down the stairs was not a problem except for when I did it more than once or twice a day. As long as your couch is comfortable and you'll be able to get up by yourself when you need to go to the bathroom, you should be fine.
  #6  
Unread 01-17-2009, 10:53 AM
What to expect the first week home?

Choose wherever you are comfortable. The couch was easier for me the first few days I was home because it was easier to prop up, etc. and to be able to get up and down on my own. Getting in and out of the bed was quite uncomfortable for me at first. I agree that walking is very important. Move as much as you are comfortable doing and just keep things handy: phone, t.v. remote, pain meds, etc. next to you during the day. I watched a lot of movies during that time. Couldn't quite concentrate on a book at first. All the best to you!!
  #7  
Unread 01-17-2009, 11:15 AM
What to expect the first week home?

Thanks, everyone, I guess I have to play it by ear. One question- how is it determined whether or not you need pain meds? I've seen that some ladies are heavily medicated when they get home, and others are on much less potent NSAIDs, etc.
I'd prefer to go with as little narcotic-type meds as possible.
  #8  
Unread 01-17-2009, 11:34 AM
What to expect the first week home?

Every MD is different but usually it's based on the rating you give your nurse. They ask you to rate your pain 1-10. I think most women would need something stong the first few days and then move to ibuprofen or whatever. I had a LSH and was able to use motrin after the first week or so. It is very important to stay ahead of the pain because pain can slow down your healing significantly. There will be days when you feel great and others where you don't. At least that's the way it is for me. When I went back to work the first day I needed a lortab that night. It just varies.
  #9  
Unread 01-17-2009, 07:18 PM
What to expect the first week home?

I had a DaVinci RAVH + BSO, and with the gas in my abdomen, I couldn't lie down in my bed for about 4 days. So I have spent most of the time on the couch, with an end table set up in front of it with my "goodies." I have kleenex, books and magazines, a laptop, Ipod and speakers, phone, knitting, and analgesics and a beverage.

I am now on day 15, and still spend part of every day on the couch propped up and reading or napping. I only go upstairs to my bed at night to sleep. Otherwise, I think I'd feel like I am way sicker than I actually am. We've been trying to do a small outing every day for the last few days, and I am walking around the house more too. It's hard not to overdo, but I am determined to heal well, and to take it easy as my dr. said I should do.

Try setting up a little table for yourself ahead of time so it'll be ready next to the couch when you get home. Then you're part of the family too, and not isolated unless you want to get away for a nap.
  #10  
Unread 01-17-2009, 08:50 PM
What to expect the first week home?

I set up a little routine every day. My husband would bring me breakfast in bed and he would bring his coffee and we'd spend some time prior to him leaving for work. I'd get up and shower after he left, then rest after that in bed, about 10 a.m. or 11 I would wander downstairs and walk for 10 minutes, have a snack of protein and fruit then sit or recline until lunch, get myself a light lunch, once done, returned upstairs for an afternoon nap, got up around 3 pm, went downstairs again for another 10 minute walk and another snack. Then I would stay down to greet my son when he returned from school and we would gradually get supper together with frequent rests in the process. After supper about 8 pm I would go upstairs, usually asleep by 9 pm.
Regarding painkillers, if the pain is so bad that you are not moving around to avoid the pain, you should be taking something. You need to be comfortable enough to continue your deep breathing and you need to be mobile enough to avoid blood clots from inactivity.
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