Recovering in hospital
Day of operation (return to the ward)
On your arrival to the ward you will be transferred to your bed.
Once again observations will be recorded of your pulse temperature
and blood pressure as well as assessing your requirement for pain
relief and checking of your operation site/s as required.
When you return you will have a catheter and may occasionally
have a drain (a plastic tube inserted into your tummy near the
operating site) this drain is to ensure that there is no abnormal
bleeding from the operation site and will be removed after 4 hours
unless the surgeon has suggested otherwise.
At this point you will be encouraged to drink fluids, initially
this will be water, but later we would expect you to have hot
drinks and or high protein calorie drinks that are stocked on the
During this return we would hope/ expect you to be able to be
sat out of bed for some time as well as start back to normal
eating. The hospital will obviously provide your food plus snacks,
if you wish your partner / carer to bring in special food for you
we would ask you first to check with the nursing staff.
If your surgery was early in the day a member of the surgical
team will usually see you to discuss your operation with you and
answer any questions.
The nursing staff will organise an injection (Clexane) to reduce
the risks of clots, this will be continued after your discharge
usually until 7 days (but in some cases for up 6 weeks)
1st Post-operative Day
Hopefully you will have had a comfortable pain free night and
had a chance to sleep. After waking the nursing staff will arrange
to remove the catheter from your bladder (this is a simple
procedure and will not cause any significant discomfort). If an
intravenous drip is still used this will be taken down unless
instructed by the surgeons.
During this day you will be seen by your surgeon unless you have
already been seen the previous day. They will ensure that you are
fully informed of the procedure and will ensure that your recovery
will proceed as expected. They will answer any questions you have
and will advise you of when it is likely you will be able to go
The pain control team will see you today and assess your needs
for pain relief and nausea control and may alter your medications
as required both for the remainder of your hospital stay and for
your medication to go home with.
You may also see a physiotherapist if required but should start
the exercises already discussed at the pre op school
During the course of the day you will be given a further
injection of the blood thinner Clexane and the nursing staff may
show you how to self-administer this after your discharge. If you
are unable to do this then we would ask if you have a family member
or friend that we could teach to do this for you.
2nd Post-Operative Day
Essentially you should aim to do the same as yesterday but more!
As well as preparing mentally for home. It is likely that you may
feel well enough for discharge today even if you had your
hysterectomy through your tummy. During this day we would expect
you to mobilise more regularly and would not expect you to be back
in bed unless you are feeling very unwell. We would expect that you
would be able to shower or bathe yourself, and that you should now
be eating and drinking normally as well as consuming additional
You are unlikely to have opened your bowels by this time,
however we do not expect you to have opened your bowels by the time
of discharge and we would not routinely need to administer
suppositories or give medicine to help this.
The nursing staff will have organised your medicines for you to
take home as required, this may include the blood thinning
injection Clexane which the nurses will again show you how to
3rd Post-Operative Day
Some patients, especially those older patients, those with known
medical conditions or those that have had more major surgery
(especially through a long up and down tummy incision) may only
just be starting to feel like going home.
Again we would encourage you to mobilise as much as possible as
well as continue to eat and drink normally and consume the energy
drinks. We will continue with the blood thinning injections and
encourage you to administer these yourself.
Discharge- Nearly all patients should expect
to be discharged by the third day after the operation even if
your Hysterectomy was done through your tummy.
Remember you are fit for discharge when you can meet the
following three criteria
- Mobilising with simple analgesia
- Eating & drinking
- Independent with self-hygiene (washing & toilet)
If you can tick these boxes tell the nursing staff that you feel
you are ready for discharge.
If you do not meet these criteria do not worry, your doctors
will have assessed you to make sure there is no problems with your
recovery and the medical and nursing team will be helping you to
achieve a speedy recovery.