Why have I been offered this operation ?
What does it involve ?
What tests will I need ?
What are the risks ?
There are other risks associated with any general anaesthetic and any operation such as chest or wound infection, DVT, difficulty passing water postoperatively, but precautions are routinely taken for these.
The question most patients want answered is the risk of dying associated with the operation. This is about 3-4%, from all possible causes but predominantly heart problems. Your surgeon should discuss these risks with you in the clinci, particularly if your risks are above average, as well as reviewing them just before the operation.
What will happen in hospital ?
After the operation you will wake up in the recovery suite, and remain there for a couple of hours until the team are happy to move you to the High Dependency Unit. You will probably be there about 24-48 hours, then back to the ward.
The drips and catheter will be removed as you begin to eat, drink, and mobilise. You will take sips of fluid from the first day, and begin eating small amounts about day 3. Sometimes people feel a bit queasy and full of gas, the bowels often go to sleep for a few days after the operation so don’t rush eating or drinking.You should be sitting out of bed and walking to the bathroom at about 4 days, and most people are looking to go home at about 7 or 8 days.
What will happen after I am discharged ?
You may get some abdominal discomfort particularly on lifting or coughing. The Physios will show you how to minimise this, but it improves rapidly. Don’t worry if you find that you aren’t going to the toilet quite as you used to until your bowels get back into their routine.