​​​​​​​​​​After Your Operation

​​​​On this page, you can read all about what to expect during your hospital stay. Or, just click on one of the links below, to get the answer you want right now.

Wh​at will happen right after my operation?
  • You will wake up in the Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU)​ and stay there for 1 to 2 hours​.
  • Once you are ready to leave the PACU, you will be moved to the Consolidated Short-Stay Unit (CSSU)​.
  • You will be attached to some or all of these tubes:
    • IV – We usually take the IV out as soon as you can tolerate an oral diet.
    • Oxygen – Oxygen helps you breathe. This will be delivered through nasal prongs.
    • ​Jackson Pratt drain(s) (JP) – are placed at your surgical site to drain fluid.
  • The nurses will give you a medication through the IV (antibiotics, anti-nausea).
  • ​You will have dressings on your surgical incisions.
How will I feel after my operation?​
  • ​Initially after your operation you may feel drowsy and tired.​
  • You may experience some pain at your surgical sites and/or nausea. We will manage your symptoms with medications.
  • ​​You may feel some tightness in your chest.
How can I take care of myself after my operation?
  • After a breast reconstruction operation, it is normal to feel stiff in your back, chest, shoulders and arms.
  • It is important to do range of motion exercises post-operatively to encourage circulation.
  • At home, you will be able to do your light activities of daily living (such as walking, toileting, getting dressed, personal hygiene).
  • ​​​We will send a referral to the Local Health Integration Network (LHIN) to arrange for a nurse within your community to help you to take care of the drain(s).
How long will I stay in the hospital?

You can expect to be discharged 1 to 2 days after your Latissimus Dorsi Flap operation or the same day if you are having your tissue expander exchanged for a permanent implant. Your health care team will talk to you about your stay once you're out of the PACU.​

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