After your operation, even if you have been discharged on the same day, the effects of the anaesthetic can take 24 hours to wear off. You need to avoid driving, operating machinery, drinking alcohol, climbing ladders, make any important or legal decisions. You should have a responsible adult with you for this 24hr period.
You will be advised to minimise movement for 2 days after surgery to minimise your chance of bruising.
Dressings: After you have been discharged from the hospital, you will have dressings over your wounds. These do not affect how well your wounds heal, but they do protect your clothes from any seepage which may occur. If they become dirty or wet they may simply be removed and changed for a similar dressing or a band aid. After a week they can be removed and discarded. Occasionally people feel more comfortable leaving the dressing on for an extra week, particularly if the wound is somewhere that your clothing rubs on. This is ok and will not affect wound healing
Sutures: Your wounds will be closed with either glue or dissolving sutures, neither of which need removal.
Pain killers: Most people find taking regular paracetamol to be enough for their pain. Paracetamol has the advantage (unlike most other pain killers), that it won't make you constipated or feel woozy. It is also very safe if taken carefully according to the instructions on the packet. In some circumstances you will be given additional pain killers to take home with you. If this is the case you should read and follow the instructions carefully and take only if needed.
Problems: Complications are unusual. Sometimes in the space where the hernia was, a fluid collection (seroma) develops. This is temporary and will resolve over a few weeks.
If you do have any problems you have multiple ways of accessing help. During office hours you can contact Dr Hamer's rooms or your GP. For more pressing problems or after hours you can also contact the emergency department at the hospital or the surgical registrar on call.
Recovery: Generally most people find that they are fit to return to light duties at work after 1 week and full duties by 2 weeks. If you are still having significant problems at this time you should be reviewed to ensure you are still recovering properly.