Shoulder Arthroscopy Post-Operative Instructions

Prescription Meds: You will be given two medications upon discharge. 1. Norco (hydrocodone/apap or a similar medication), this is used for pain control. Pain levels are highest on days 1 thru 3 post op, so you will want to take this on a regular schedule. 2.Naproxen (Naprosyn), anti-inflammatory that you can take as needed.

Side effects and precautions: Pain meds and anesthesia meds may cause nausea. Leave the scopolamine patch behind your ear for 72 hours to avoid nausea. Do not drive, drink alcohol or take Tylenol while taking Norco.

Over the Counter Medications: You may take a baby aspirin (81mg) daily for 2 weeks after surgery to decrease your risk of blood clot after surgery. If you take the norco for >2 days you may need an over the counter stool softener to prevent constipation (Colace or docusate 100 mg capsules can be taken up tothree times daily as needed).

Wound Care: Leave the big surgical bandage on and do not shower for 48 hours after surgery. After 48 hrs, remove bandages, and apply waterproof bandaids to the incision(s) prior to showering (available at Walgreens or CVS). To see bloody soaked fluids on bandages is normal. Replace waterproof bandages with a clean dry regular bandaid over each incision, after showering. Do not cut any stitches or apply any ointments or lotions to the wounds. Do not soak in any pool or bath water until 4 weeks after surgery.

Physical therapy: Physical therapy should start between 3-7 days after surgery (unless otherwise instructed). Choose a PT clinic close to your home so you can be compliant with your program. Please bring your prescription and protocol (provided on surgery day) to your first PT appointment. This contains important information regarding your surgery and care.

Sling: you will be provided with a sling on surgery day. You will need to where the sling at all times, except when bathing. Typically the sling is worn for 6 weeks. Dr. Nho will instruct you on any exceptions. Do not lift anything heavier than a cell phone in your operative hand. We do not recommend driving while in the sling.

Follow up:
You will need to follow up in clinic with Dr. Nho or Allie in 10-14 days. Please call central scheduling to make an appointment. At this visit you will receive updated instructions on your sling use and restrictions.

When should you contact the office?

  • you have a fever >101.4 (a low grade temp is expected after surgery, but let us know if it gets this high!)
  • you develop chills or sweats
  • you have pus, pain or redness surrounding the incision sites
© Shane J. Nho MD MS Sports medicine Arthroscopic Treatment Chicago Illinois

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