Laparoscopy

Discharge Instructions for Pelvic Laparoscopy

You had a procedure called pelvic laparoscopy. During this procedure, your doctor used small incisions in your abdomen to examine your abdominal or pelvic organs and possibly to perform a procedure. Recovery from laparoscopy is faster than from regular open abdominal surgery (called laparotomy).

What to Expect

Remember, you can expect the following:

  • Light bleeding from the vagina

  • Soreness, bruising, and mild swelling near incisions

  • Burning with urination for a few days

  • Some abdominal and shoulder pain

  • Constipation

  • Feeling tired, especially for the first 24 hours you are home

Activity

  • Take it easy for the rest of the day after you are discharged. Each day, do a little more as you feel able.

  • Don't stay in bed. Get up and move around.

  • Don't drive for 7 days.

  • Avoid strenuous activity for 2 weeks.

Incision and Other Care

  • Put nothing in your vagina for 2 weeks.

  • Take pain medications as directed.

  • Don't drink alcohol while on pain medications.

  • Wrap an ice pack or bag of frozen peas in a plastic bag; then cover with a thin cloth. Place it over the bandaged incision area for no longer than 20 minutes at a time. Do this as needed to reduce pain and keep swelling down.

  • Don't pull off the strips of tape (Steri-Strips) used to close your incisions. Let them fall off on their own.

  • If you have a gauze bandage, replace it after 24 hours.

  • Shower as needed. If you still have a bandage, cover it with plastic wrap to keep it dry.

  • Don't swim or take a tub bath for 2 weeks.

Follow-Up

Make a follow-up appointment as directed by our staff.

When to Call Your Doctor

Call your doctor right away if you have any of the following:

  • Increased abdominal pain

  • Vomiting or nausea

  • Diarrhea that doesn't go away

  • Fever above 100.1°F

  • Shaking chills

  • Signs of infection around the incision (redness, drainage, warmth, pain)

  • Sudden chest pain or shortness of breath

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