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Pain after a heart bypass surgery
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kunrj posted:
My friend had a heart bypass surgery 3 weeks ago. He is home and has been doing well. He had been having some troubles with sleeping. About 3 days ago, after going to bed for an hour, he woke up with severe pain on his chest and back. He took a pain pill but it did not seem to help. A nurse came in the morning and suggested that he should go to see his cardiologist. The doctor said that it was normal to feel pain after a surgery but he said that my friend should talk with the surgeon about the pain. The surgeon had the opinion that if my friend felt pain, he should continue taking the pain medicine to manage it. Yesterday, my friend did not have the pain when he slept but he said that he might not sleep that long. Tonight he had pain again after sleeping for an hour. Is this normal? What can he do to ease the pain?
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James Beckerman, MD, FACC responded:
Some degree of pain after surgery is to be expected. Some people find that with pain medication, incentive spirometry (the breathing gizmo that he came home from the hospital with) and cardiac rehabilitation, recovery is faster.