Did you just have hand or arm surgery?

Here are a few general instructions to help guide you after operation.

(Tap Card to Read)

ICE

Applying an ice pack directly to the area of post-operative dressing will reduce inflammation and swelling at the surgical site. It is normal to experience some swelling within the first 2 weeks after surgery. This is why ice is a great option especially for the first few days after surgery to not only bring down swelling, but prevent further swelling in the future. ( Alternating between Ice and Heat after 3 days helps too!)

HEAT

Heat can be used to alleviate pain 3 days after your surgery. Apply the heat to sore area for 15- 20 minutes at a time. Heat enlarges the blood vessels creating an increase in blood flow. Increased blood flow allows our body to flush out the chemicals that cause pain. Heat can also aid in reducing muscle spasms.

SWELLING

It is normal to see swelling the first week after surgery. To speed up recovery and ease pain, actions can be taken to reduce swelling. Ice and Elevation are a great place to start (see ice and elevation cards).

ELEVATION

Elevate your arm at or above your heart. This will bring down the swelling by reducing the blood flow to the area of operation. Try lying flat on your back with your hand resting on a few pillows for maximum comfort. After having surgery, the hand/arm should be elevated for at least 3 days.

WOUND CARE

Postoperative dressing should be left intact until visiting your doctor within 10-14 days post-surgery. If swelling is occurring in the fingers and is NOT responding to ice or elevation, loosening the outer ace bandage or dressing can bring relief. For some procedures (trigger finger, carpal tunnel, ganglion cyst) you can change your dressing three days after surgery you feel comfortable doing so properly. A new dressing may need to be applied to the wound on the third day after surgery. Do not get your wound wet until seven days after surgery. Do not immerse the wound in water.

MEDICATION

If you have been prescribed pain medication please take them as directed. Your pharmacist may be able to provide information about any potential drug interactions with other medications that you are currently taking. Pain medications commonly cause nausea, constipation and itching. Do not drink alcohol, drive or make important decisions while taking narcotic pain medications. Refer to your doctor about any further questions you may have.

CONTACT DOCTOR

Follow up appointments are typically scheduled between 10 and 14 days post-surgery. If you are experiencing any abnormalities or extreme pain please contact us during regular business hours and we would be happy to assist you. We are here to help! Please do not hesitate to give us a call regarding any questions or concerns you may have.

ACTIVITIES

Some or all of your fingers may be free of your dressing allowing you to move them. Finger movement, if allowed, can reduce stiffness and swelling. If given the "ok" to do so, move those fingers!

Have more questions?  Contact us at (517)332-4263 and we would be happy to assist you!