General and Gastrointestinal Surgery
You can do whatever you are comfortable doing once you are discharged, except heavy lifting.
- You cannot cause any serious damage by your activities after your surgery. Nonetheless, use common sense, do not over exert yourself and do no lift more than 15-20 pounds. You will most likely not want to do much for 24 to 48 hours after surgery.
- Although you should get rest during this time, it is equally important to get up and walk.
- Do not drive while you are taking narcotic pain medicines and while your incisions hurt. This may reduce your ability to move quickly.
- Your thought processes may take 24 to 48 hours to return to normal because of anesthesia. Do not make any important business or personal decisions during this time.
- It is okay to go up and down stairs, and is encouraged.
- You can return to work when you feel comfortable that you can perform your job safely and at the level you and your employer expect. Usually this is a minimum of one week. If your job involves heavy lifting you should stay out of work for 2-4 weeks.
- Most people find they fatigue easily during the second and even the third week, so don't overload your schedule.
- Do not return to exercise or strenuous activity until you are seen for a follow-up.