Pain after an operation (post-op pain) is common and expected. These guidelines can help you stay as comfortable as possible.
Take only the medicines that your healthcare provider tells you to take.
Take medicines on time. Don't take more than prescribed.
Take pain medicines with some food to prevent an upset stomach.
Don’t drink alcohol while using pain medicines.
Don't drive while taking opioid pain medicines.
Check with your healthcare provider before taking any over-the-counter (OTC) pain reliever in addition to your prescribed pain medicine.
Non-opioids include OTC acetaminophen and ibuprofen and some prescription pain relievers.
All relieve mild to moderate pain and some reduce swelling.
Possible side effects include stomach upset and bleeding. High doses may cause kidney or liver problems.
Opioids are only available by prescription.
Opioids ease moderate to severe pain.
Possible side effects include stomach upset, nausea, and itching.
Opioids may cause constipation. To help prevent this, eat high-fiber foods and drink plenty of water.
Your healthcare provider may recommend a stool softener.
Call your healthcare provider or seek medical attention right away if you notice any of these symptoms:
Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, or stomach cramps
Breathing problems or a fast heart rate
Feeling tired, sluggish, or dizzy
Pain that is not eased with the pain medicine
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