Home Healthcare After Surgery: Services That Can Speed Recovery

The ONLY guide you'll ever need for post-operative care for patients at home.

6/9/20232 min read

Undergoing surgery can be physically and emotionally taxing, even for routine procedures. While recovering at home, you'll likely need some extra help during the first few weeks as you heal. Home healthcare after surgery can make a huge difference in your comfort, mobility and ability to resume normal activities.

Home healthcare professionals can:

•Monitor your incision and change dressings. Nurses will check your surgical wound for signs of infection and keep it clean and covered with the proper dressings.

•Administer IV medications and fluids. If you require IV antibiotics, pain medications or hydration, a nurse can come to your home to administer them.

•Manage your pain. Nurses can educate you on non-narcotic pain relievers and work with your doctor to adjust your pain medications as needed.

•Assist with personal care. If you're unable to bathe, dress or use the bathroom independently, nurses can help ensure your hygiene and comfort.

•Provide physical therapy at home. A physical therapist can create a customized exercise program to improve your range of motion, strength and mobility as you heal from surgery. They'll modify exercises as your recovery progresses.

•Recommend assistive devices. Occupational therapists can recommend devices like canes, walkers and grab bars to help you move around safely and independently at home.

•Monitor for complications. Home healthcare nurses will watch for potential issues like blood clots, infection and pneumonia that are more common after surgery. They'll report any red flags to your doctor.

•Reinforce discharge instructions. Nurses will review your doctor's post-surgery instructions to ensure you and your caregivers understand any activity limits, diet changes, follow-up appointments and medication changes.

•Offer emotional support. Home healthcare aides can provide companionship during what may be a lonely, frustrating time. Their presence can boost your spirits and confidence.

The goal of home healthcare after surgery is a safe, comfortable recovery that allows you to heal at your own pace in the privacy of your home. With the right services in place, you may be able to avoid complications that could lead to rehospitalization.

So talk to your surgeon about a referral for home healthcare to begin immediately after you're discharged from the hospital. A team of professionals focused on your specific needs can make a world of difference in speeding your surgical recovery and getting you back to your usual routine.