Open Heart Surgery Recovery – What You Need To Know

open heart surgery recovery

Have you or a loved one recently been told that you may need open-heart surgery? This can be a scary, life-changing piece of news to get. You will probably have a lot of questions that you will want to ask your doctor. You will want to know about the surgery process, the length of the surgery, what will be done, and what the recovery time will be. So what should you come to expect when it comes to open-heart surgery recovery?      

Your heart is one of the most vital organs to sustain life. Because of this, open-heart surgery is a major operation performed by skilled surgeons. These doctors will get your heart in top working condition during the surgery but the recovery period is also important to keep your heart going. As a major operation, it requires to stay in the hospital after surgery. Staying in the hospital, a nurse can help patients in recovery.

open heart surgery

During the surgery, the surgeon will open up your chest in order to get to the heart. You will have a scar from this incision and it can be very painful right after the surgery. The breathing tube that helps you breath remains in place to help your body get the oxygen needed to recover. Your IV will also stay in place in case pain relief is needed.    

This type of surgery normally requires the patient to stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) for a few days while recovering. During open-heart surgery recovery, a patient can expect to stay, at minimum, a week to ten days in the hospital after the surgery. However, it may take a few months to feel back to normal. Don’t be discouraged if you feel tired or weak for a few weeks after open-heart surgery. This is perfectly normal and expected.     

It is also important to note that open-heart surgery involves follow up care with your doctor after the surgery has been performed. This can include blood work, scans, or any other follow up tests your doctor orders. It is important to keep an open line of communication with your doctor following open-heart surgery.

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