Surgery in general and orthopedic surgery specifically results in some post-operative pain.  Pain management is an important component of your post-operative care. For most surgeries, this management starts in the operating room when the anesthesiologist and/or your surgeon give long acting local anesthetics.

In recovery and at home, pain medication is used to reduce pain to a tolerable level, usually to five (5) and under on a scale of  0 – 10.

Remember that pain medication takes 20 – 40 minutes before becoming effective.

Do not take additional Tylenol/Acetaminophen while taking Narcotic pain medication. Most pain medication already has Tylenol/Acetaminophen in it. The maximum does for Tylenol in a 24 hour period is 4000mg.

Keep the operative limb elevated above the level of the heart when possible for the first few days after surgery.

Ice is often an effective pain reliever. If advised by your surgeon on your discharge instructions, please use it. Although it seems that the coldness will not penetrate the big dressing, it does get through and can be very effective. Always keep your dressing dry.