Post-operative Instructions for Women

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If at any time throughout your post-operative course if you have a particular question or concern, never hesitate to contact your surgeon (Dr. Karen Elizabeth Boyle can be contacted day or night at 410-825-5454 and ask to have Dr. Boyle paged). Her normal response time is 30 seconds. If you do not hear from Dr. Boyle within 5 minutes, call again.

During business hours you will talk to one of the office staff. After hours you will be connected to the answering service and usually you will be immediately cross connected.  Otherwise the answering service will give Dr. Boyle the number and she will call you back. Under these circumstances if you do not hear from Dr. Boyle in five minutes call the answering service again. The answering service will attempt to contact her once again.  Repeat until you get in touch with Dr. Boyle.

Discharge from the surgery center

  1. Make sure that you purchase the medications prescribed to you
  2. Occasionally some patients may experience nausea during the car ride to their recovery destination. If the nausea persists, inform your surgeon and appropriate medications can be prescribed.
  3. HOME/HOTEL All patients have been given local anesthesia.  The purpose is to provide you with intended post anesthesia pain control.

The First Postoperative day

  1. This first day you should rest, eat light according to your appetite, drink fluids, and take your medications as prescribed.
  2. Place an ice pack (a bag of frozen peas works well) on the genital area on top of gauze dressing - change every few hours until bedtime the day of the procedure. This will assist in greatly reducing swelling as well as provide soothing relief.  Do not keep the ice pack on continuously.  Place it in the area for 15 to 20 minutes then remove it for a while and then place it on again.  Continue this process until you are ready to retire for the evening.  You do not have to use the ice while you sleep. You can resume the same routine in the morning.
  3. It is expected to have a small amount of blood stain the gauze dressing.  Sometimes the incision may separate slightly before healing.  There may be some swelling and firmness at the site of the incisions.
  4. For those patients with Foley catheters (bladder catheter's) make sure that the "white tubing" coming from the bladder to the bag does not get kinked or bent because the urine will no longer flow freely and this can result in bladder distortion. Empty the urine bag as needed (every four hours or so). The catheter will be removed on the third or fourth day in the office.
  5. Keep the gauze and fluff dressing in place for one day.  The dressing can be taken down the day after surgery.

The Second Postoperative day:

  1. Move around according to how you feel, but try to rest in bed as much as possible.
  2. Continue the ice packs to the scrotum.
  3. Take your medications as prescribed.
  4. Please note that quite a few patients report problems with constipation. Remember that all of these pain medications (Vicodine, Tylenol #3 etc...) are constipating. Some patients are more sensitive to others. Some question when they should have a bowel movement.  Bowel movements should occur according to your particular bowel habits. If the problem persist you can use a Fleet enema (this can be obtained over the counter at any pharmacy) use as directed. With elimination use your hand to hold the vulva and perineum. We want minimum pressure on this area. You should also drink plenty of fluids, take the stool softener, and eat a high fiber diet (fiber, vegetables, fruit and water).

The Third Postoperative day:

  1. From this day after surgery showering is fine. The labia can be gently washed with warm water and a mild soap. Tub baths, Jacuzzi etc. should not be taken for 4 weeks.
  2. Ambulate according to your tolerance.
  3. Take medications as prescribed.
  4. Relax and rest for one to two days following your procedure.  Avoid excessive walking, sitting for prolonged periods of time, and unnecessary exertion.  You will recover quicker and easier if you take it easy for these days immediately post-op.
  5. Avoid exercise (no running, heavy lifting, straining, etc.) for four to six weeks.  Avoid straddle activities like cycling, horseback riding for at least six weeks.
  6. The incisions were closed with absorbable suture.  This suture dissolves on its own and does not need to be removed.   It may begin to itch at 10 days postoperative.  This is typical and you can take Benadryl if it is bothersome and call Dr. Boyle.
  7. It is typical to have swelling of the area and it may appear as if you would have expected.  It takes 4-6 weeks for all of the swelling to diminish and for the true appearance to be appreciated.  You may have spotting for a few days postoperative, and may experience numbness and tingling for a few weeks following surgery.
  8. Abstain from intercourse for six weeks after surgery.
  9. Contact Dr. Boyle at 410-825-5454 for problems or questions immediately.  Please arrange a postoperative appointment at the office for 2 weeks following surgery.

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