Any questions regarding the above information, feel free to contact Peggy Ann at 302-731-2888 ext 1160.
In the Hospital
Please read the following carefully and check off each item when completed.
What to Do Enter the hospital’s main lobby and ask to be directed to the Surgery and Procedure Unit.
What to Expect You will be prepared for surgery in the Surgery and Procedure Unit. You will then be taken to the operating room holding area.
Family members should then go to the waiting room on the second floor. Your surgeon will call your family when the procedure is complete. If your family cannot stay, please inform the staff in the waiting room or the staff of the Surgical Spine Center.
In the operating room holding area, an IV will be started and your operation site will be scrubbed. Your operating room nurse and your anesthesiologist will interview you. They will then escort you to the operating room.
Following surgery, you will be taken to a recovery area where you will remain for about two hours. Depending on your situation, you may wake up with oxygen, circulation boots, stockings or a device on your finger to measure oxygen. During this time, pain control will be initiated and your vital signs will be monitored. You will be taken to the Surgical Spine Center where a nurse will care for you. Only one or two very close family members or friends should visit you on this day.
Pain medication is available for you throughout your stay. You will be asked to rate your discomfort on a scale of 0-10, with “0” being no discomfort and “10” being the worst discomfort possible (refer to “For Your Information,” Pain Control.) Please let your nurse know if you are experiencing any discomfort.
Your surgeon may request that you sit up and get out of bed. You may also be asked to start doing the exercises described in “In the Hospital,“ Exercises After Surgery (see tab below) on the first day. This will help prevent blood clots from forming in your legs. You will also learn to use your Incentive Spirometer.
Deep Breathing Exercise 1. Sit up straight. Sitting on the edge of the bed usually works best. 2. Place your hands lightly on your belly. 3. Breathe in through your nose as deeply as you can. (You should feel your belly rising under your hands). 4. Hold your breath for a count of three. 5. Breathe out slowly, with your lips pursed (like you are trying to whistle). 6. Repeat every hour that you are awake for the first three days after surgery.
Coughing Exercise This exercise should be done after deep breathing exercises. If you have had surgery on your belly or chest, use a pillow or rolled towel to help support the incision. 1. Breathe in through your nose and hold your breath for a count of three. 2. Breathe out through your mouth, holding the pillow or towel tightly against your incision. Cough deeply from your belly, not your throat. 3. Repeat five times an hour while you are awake, for three days after surgery.
Leg Exercises Lying in bed after surgery can cause the body’s circulation to slow. This can cause slower wound healing and/or blood clots to form in a leg. To improve circulation, do the following leg exercises. 1. Point your leg straight out while lying in bed or sitting in a reclining chair. 2. Point your toes straight out, then point them towards the ceiling. 3. One at a time, turn your ankles clockwise and counterclockwise. 4. One leg at a time, slide your foot up the mattress toward your body. Bring it up as far as possible, bending your knee. Slide your foot back down the mattress. 5. Tighten your buttock (bottom) muscles for five seconds and release. 6. Repeat five times each hour you are awake, for three days after surgery, or until you are up and moving around.