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Post Operative Hernia Care



Healthy Eating

â�¢  The day of your surgery drink abundant liquids such as water, juice or Gatorade.

â�¢  The day of your surgery start by eating small amounts of easily digestible foods such as soup, rice or boiled vegetables.

â�¢  The day after surgery you may eat anything that agrees with your stomach.



â�¢  The day of your surgery relax in bed or in a comfortable chair. You may walk as far as the bathroom or the table for your meals.

â�¢  The first day after surgery start progressive walking by walking within your house. You may need some assistance to start walking. When you walk, look at yourself in the mirror to be sure you have erect posture, even if it means walking slowly. This will prevent you from developing back problems.

â�¢  Do not stay in bed the first day after your operation. You are advised to walk or remain in a comfortable chair. If you feel very tired or in pain, it is permissible to take a nap during the day after lunch, but DO NOT SPEND THE ENTIRE DAY IN BED.

â�¢  The second day after surgery, begin by walking around your house.

â�¢  The third day after surgery you may leave your house. By the third day you should begin to take two long walks per day: one in the morning and the other in the evening. Progressively increase the distance of the walks each day until you are walking for about thirty minutes each time. Again, be careful to pay close attention to your posture while you walk.


Bowel Habits/ Constipation

â�¢  You may become constipated as a result of the pain medication.

â�¢  We recommend that you take a high fiber diet and stool softener.

â�¢  If you are unable to move your bowels by the second post-operative day, take an over-the-counter laxative.

â�¢  If by the third post-operative day you are still unable to move your bowels, call Dr. Albin at our office and he will prescribe a strong laxative.


Dressing Care

â�¢  Keep your dressing clean and dry.

â�¢  It is normal to experience pain, slight swelling, redness and a small amount of oozing or discharge from the incision site.

â�¢  It is also normal to experience a slight elevation in body temperature.



â�¢  Resume your regular medications after surgery.

â�¢  Purchase all medication prescribed to you. Pain medications are given to everyone to be taken as prescribed and antibiotics mat be prescribed for one day. Stool softeners are given to patients with bowel disturbances.


Bathing & Showering

â�¢  5 days after surgery you may remove your outer dressing (DO NOT remove the tape) and take a 15 minute shower in warm water three times daily, but the surgical area needs to be kept as dry as possible. DO NOT WASH the surgical site for 5 days after surgery.


  • You have difficulty urinating.
  • You are constipated or unable to move your bowels on the third day after surgery.
  • You have a fever over 101° F.
  • Your incision becomes red, painful or swollen, foul smelling or excessively bloody discharge.
  • Your incision opens. Lightly press a clean cloth over the incision to control bleeding.
  • You feel overly sleepy, dizzy or groggy as your medication may be too strong.
  • You have side effects from your medications such as nausea, vomiting, redness, a rash or itching.
© 2006 Hernia Center of Southern California , Pasadena CA