Pain is common after surgery and if the pain is uncomfortable, you can use medication to manage the pain after surgery. Pain control and medications prescribed by your anesthesiologist or orthopedic surgeon are helpful in speeding up your recovery.
The obvious part of the body you may feel pain in after surgery is the site of the surgery. However, depending on the kind of surgery and illness, you might feel muscle pain, throat pain, and/or movement pain.
Below are the pain control and management treatments given by pain specialists and doctors.
You can use common painkillers and NSAIDs yourself if you feel mild pain after surgery. You can use paracetamol, aspirin, and ibuprofen. They can reduce pain, swelling, and soreness. They are the most risk-free pain management medicines because they are not addictive. If your pain can be relieved with painkillers and NSAIDs, you can prevent the use of strong pain management options like morphine.
Intravenous Patient-Controlled Analgesia (PCA)
PCA is a safe and controlled method of getting pain medicine directly into your intravenous line (IV line). IV is a soft and flexible tube that is used to give patients fluids and medicine. A vein in the arm or hand is where the IV is placed.
To use PCA, a computerized pump, you only need to push the button of the pump and it will transmit a small amount of pain medicine in your vein through the IV. This gives you a safe and stable way of getting pain relief whenever you feel discomfort giving you the control to manage your pain.
Moreover, there is no risk of overdose because the pump is programmed to give you a small and certain amount of pain medicine upon pressing the pump’s button. If you press it more than the programmed amount, it still won’t allow the medicine.
Make sure that you’re using the PCA pump yourself. Don’t let someone else push the pump’s button without your control because it can be dangerous. You should be awake, and aware, and have to push the button yourself.
This is another method of administering pain medicine to different types of patients commonly used during labor and childbirth. It can be given to people who are experiencing pain after surgery. In this method, pain medicine or an opioid is injected into an area of the spinal cord known as epidural space.
This method is used to provide pain relief to some areas of the body like the belly or legs. It stops pain signals from getting to the brain reducing the feeling of pain.
Epidural analgesia can be used for temporary pain relief and also for the complete numbness of a body part. Moreover, the duration of the medication can be determined by your doctor and the kind of pain you’re feeling. It can be for a few hours, days, or weeks.
This pain relief method is considered more effective than intravenous medication because patients who receive pain medication with this method feel less pain when doing normal activities like breathing and walking.
Moreover, epidural analgesia can reduce the risk of heart and lung complications in people with heart and lung diseases.
Nerve blocks are also used for controlling post-surgery pain. However, they reduce pain or numb a small area of the body compared to epidural analgesia. The reason why it’s used is that it can reduce the amount of pain medicine given to the patient. So, if you’re at risk of experiencing the side effects of epidural like nausea, vomiting, and drowsiness, you may be given a nerve block.
However, the decision is made by you and your surgeon who may also get the advice of your anesthesiologist.
For any pain medication, you should discuss your surgery and pain levels with your doctor so the correct pain management plan can be laid out. Your health and condition may be assessed frequently for adjusting or changing the pain management routine.
Pain after surgery can be reduced with the right pain management plan. Your surgeon may refer you to a pain management doctor Woodbridge who will check your medical reports, lab tests, and medical history to advise the method best suited for your pain management.