Your Post-Op Recovery Checklist

If you have a major surgery scheduled for later this year, you’ll want to start thinking about recovery. Surgery is only half the battle—recovery is the other half.

This article will list some of the most common major surgeries and the products that will enhance your in-home recovery.

Broken Bone Recovery

Overview: Bone breaks can occur anywhere in the body. When a major bone is broken or fractured, recovery can take quite a while. There are products that can help with the recovery from most types of major bone breaks.

Products for Broken Bone Recovery

Cast Covers. Take a shower without aggravating your injury. Cast covers seal the area around the cast, making it waterproof. Some cast covers even allow swimming—great for pool therapy!

Toilet Seat Risers and Rails. Temporarily losing the use of an arm or leg due to a break can make getting up difficult for some patients. Toilet seat risers and seat rails grant added leverage to users, making it much easier to get up.

Cold Therapy Machines. Some doctors prescribe cold therapy machines to help patients recover from a broken bone. Cold therapy machine pads fit specific body parts and circulate cold water to promote healing and prevent major bruising.

Products for Lower Body Broken Bone Recovery

Crutches. The old standby, crutches allow users with lower leg injuries to move quickly. Crutches come in a few styles based on how active a patient is. Sports-style crutches have spring-loaded tips, allowing for fast travel!

Knee Scooters. If a patient is too weak to use crutches for long periods of time, a knee scooter (also called a knee walker) can help. Put your injured leg on the pad and use your good leg to move where you need to go.

Knee Replacement and Hip Replacement Recovery

Overview: Knee and Hip replacement surgeries are the most common joint replacement procedures. Recovery time can vary based on the type of surgery, but there are many products that can help with post-op knee and hip replacement rehabilitation.

Products for Knee Replacement and Hip Replacement Recovery

Lift Chairs. Getting up from a chair can be extremely difficult after knee or hip surgery. Lift chairs give patients a big boost, allowing them to stand up with less physical exertion. Be sure to put the weight on your good leg—lift chairs do about 90% of the work. The other 10% is on you!

Hospital Beds. Recovery from major knee or hip replacement surgeries can take a long time. If you have stairs in your house, getting to your bed might be an issue. Renting a hospital bed to put on the ground floor can prevent falls and make sleeping easy.

Shower Chairs and Grab Bars. Shaky balance is a temporary, yet common, side effect of knee or hip replacement surgery. Showers and tubs are slippery, so having something to grab on to prevents falls and gives patients confidence. Shower chairs with arms can do double duty in some bathrooms.

Cataract Removal Recovery

Overview: Cataract removal is a common procedure that is associated with a quick recovery (usually). Recovery times are often longer for older patients and require some down-time at home. A few products can make life easier during the cataract removal post-op period.

Products for Cataract Removal Recovery

Eye Patches. Many doctors ask patients to wear an eye patch after cataract removal surgeries. Eye patches provide protection from light and rubbing during sleep to patients.

Neck Pillows. The most common way to aggravate an eye that has just had a cataract removed is by accidentally rubbing it during sleep. Neck pillows can help avoid unnecessary eye contact with your bed and pillow by keeping your head in one place and adding a buffer zone between you and the bed.

Patient Alarms. Staying put for a few days after surgery may be necessary. If you need help with daily activities like cooking, a patient alarm can help. Patient alarms are buttons that alert a family member or caregiver when you need assistance.

Heart Procedure Recovery

Overview: This section includes products that will help with the most commonly performed heart procedures. Angioplasty, valve work, bypass surgery, and stent work are some of the most common reasons the following products are used for post-op recovery.

Please check with your doctor before using any of these products. Heart surgeries vary greatly from person to person, and you need to be sure you are healthy enough to recover at home. Find out what your limits are from your doctor.

Products for Heart Procedure Recovery

Lift Chairs. Using a lift chair after a heart procedure can make life a lot easier. Many heart procedures require weeks of recovery, consisting of minimal physical exertion. Lift chairs take away the majority of physical exertion from the thing patients do the most during heart procedure recovery—standing up and sitting down.

Transport Wheelchairs. Patients won’t have the strength to use a wheelchair after most heart procedures. Transport wheelchairs are used by caregivers to push patients to and from appointments. Having a transport chair can make life easy for heart procedure recoveries that involve a lot of post-op doctor appointments.

Mobility Scooters and Power Wheelchairs. If having a full-time caregiver at home after a heart procedure is not an option, power mobility can help patients get around with minimal physical exertion. Mobility Scooters are primarily used for outside trips, while power wheelchairs are more suited for getting around indoors.

Post-Op Recovery Options at Oswald’s Pharmacy

Our Medical Equipment Showroom has all the products listed above and much more. Our team members will listen to your needs and provide you with the best options for your recovery and beyond. We are here to make life easy for anyone going through a difficult situation. Helping you solve problems while staying comfortable is what our team strives for.

If you have specific questions, please don’t hesitate to send us an email or give us a call. We are open 7 days a week to help you with any of your needs.

*The conditions chosen for this article were based on common procedures listed in an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality study.

Written by Wil Anderson

Wil has been working for Oswald's since 1994. A 6th generation member of the Wickel-Oswald-Kester-Anderson family, Wil focuses on web development, inventory, and sales. With over 10 years of experience selling durable and home medical equipment, Wil is an expert on helping people find what they need to use after major surgery or an accident. Wil graduated with a BA in English Literature from Knox College in 2008, minoring in History. A graduate of Naperville North High School in 2004, Wil is a lifelong Naperville resident and is currently a columnist for Positively Naperville.