What Should You Expect In The Days Following Reconstructive Surgery?

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Facial reconstructive techniques have advanced by leaps and bounds in recent decades, allowing surgeons to repair even severe deformities and other issues. While these surgeries are relatively common, no major surgery should be taken lightly. Preparing for your operation can be stressful, but many people are especially concerned about the days and weeks spent in recovery. This article will help to explain what you are likely to experience following a successful surgery and how you can help your recovery to proceed more quickly and smoothly.

Not All Recoveries Are the Same

Certain facts may be true for most patients, but it is essential to understand that not all recoveries are the same. The length of time that your recovery takes will depend heavily on the specific procedure, your age, your overall health, and a large number of other factors. Managing expectations is a key part of ensuring a successful recovery process. Many patients become discouraged if they are not experiencing the level of progress they expect, and this can impact their ability to follow through with instructions. Understanding from the outset that every recovery is unique will help you to stay on track even if you face unexpected difficulties.

Don't Expect To Be Released Immediately

You may require close postoperative monitoring following your surgery. For intense procedures, this period is sometimes spent in the intensive care unit. Before your operation, your doctor should discuss the amount of time you are likely to spend in the hospital. While complications may increase this time, a 2-5 day hospital stay is typical after major reconstructive surgery. This time allows medical staff to keep a close eye on you as you go through the most critical portions of your postoperative recovery.

You Will Work Closely With Your Medical Team

Even relatively minor facial reconstructions are still major surgeries, and you should not expect to be left to recover on your own. Before your surgery, your physician will discuss a tentative post-operative plan that will include several follow-up visits throughout your recovery process. These visits will track your progress, provide support, and allow you to work with your physicians to adjust your recovery plan as necessary. The timeline for your recovery plan may change as your doctor observes your progress, and you should expect this as a regular part of the recovery process.

Mental Healthcare Follow-Ups May Be Necessary

Any surgery is traumatic, and an operation that has the potential to alter your appearance drastically can be especially challenging to cope with. Your physician will likely suggest that you consult with a mental healthcare professional both before and after your surgery. It is a good idea to take this opportunity to discuss your situation and any concerns that you may have. These short visits can help you to deal with any stress or anxiety you may be feeling, and will help to set the stage should you require further support during your recovery.

Most importantly, remember that you are not alone. Your medical team will be there throughout the entire process to support you as necessary. Any concerns or issues should be discussed promptly so that your recovery can proceed as quickly and smoothly as possible.

Contact a facial reconstructive surgeon for more information.