General and Gastrointestinal Surgery


You can do whatever you are comfortable doing once you are discharged, except heavy lifting. 

Some tips:

  • 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.