What is postoperative care for children?

Postoperative Care for Children

When can your child be active after surgery?

When your child can return to normal activities depends on the type of surgery. The doctor will tell you when your child can do sports and exercise, and return to school or day care. If the doctor says it's okay, you can help your child get up and move gently several times a day.

What do you need to know about giving your child medicines after surgery?

The doctor will talk with you about restarting your child's medicines and starting any new ones. If the doctor gave your child a prescription medicine for pain, give it as prescribed. If your child isn't taking a prescription pain medicine, ask the doctor if your child can take an over-the-counter medicine.

What happens when your child is ready to go home after surgery?

You will get instructions about helping your child recover from surgery. This is called a discharge plan. It will cover things like diet, wound care, medicines, follow-up care, activity, and how soon your child can get back to a normal routine.

What can your child eat after surgery?

Follow the doctor's instructions about what your child can eat or drink. The doctor may suggest giving clear liquids until any nausea has gone away. Then give small amounts of your child's usual foods. When your child does well with those, your child can return to their normal diet.

What do you do if your child has infection or pain after surgery?

Call your doctor if your child has signs of infection or has pain that doesn't get better with pain medicine. Signs of infection include increased pain, swelling, or warmth or redness around the incision. Signs of pain include behavior changes, crying, and grunting. They may also include sleep changes and unusual body movements.

What do you need to know when your child leaves the hospital after surgery?

Your child's discharge plan will outline what you need to know about caring for your child after surgery. Look for information on medicines, follow-up visits, what your child can and can't eat, how to change bandages, when your child can return to regular activities, and what to do about pain and infection.

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