The umbilical hernia repair that your child had today may cause some discomfort for a few days. The operative site is covered with a pressure dressing. The dressing should be kept clean and dry. It is not to be removed for five days or as indicated by your surgeon. You should observe and supervise your child's activity for the remainder of the day. Sleepiness or dizziness for a few hours after surgery may be expected.
Discomfort: If your child is irritable or uncomfortable, you may give Tylenol or Tempra Drops according to the manufacturer's recommendations for your child's age, which are printed on the bottle. Your child may experience a temperature elevation the day of surgery and into the evening hours. If the temperature is less than 102 F give Tylenol; if the temperature rises above 102 F, call the answering service for further instructions. An elevated temperature often means the child needs more fluids.
Diet: Give your child clear liquids (water, carbonated drinks, Gatorade) as tolerated for the first four to six hours after surgery. If these are tolerated well, you may then give your child the food he or she normally eats. If nausea or vomiting should occur, stop all food for a couple of hours then start over with liquids and gradually build up to regular foods.
Activity: Your child's play and other activities should be limited for the first two days following surgery; normal activity can then be resumed. Strenuous activity, such as bicycle riding and gym climbing, should be delayed until specific permission to do so is obtained from your surgeon. Your child may return to school three days after surgery; however, he/she may not participate in physical education classes until permission to do so is given by your surgeon.
Bathing: Since your child has a pressure dressing over the operative site, sponge bathe the child, but try to keep the dressing dry. If the dressing becomes soaked with water, remove the dressing and apply a Band-Aid to the incision.
On rare occasions, complications may develop following an operative procedure. For this type of surgery, it is important that you report the following:
Excessive odor or drainage indicating infection
Fresh bleeding (not old, crusty blood)
Postoperative Check: Your surgeon will want to see your child following surgery. If you have not already arranged a follow-up appointment, please call our office to do so, the afternoon after surgery or the following morning. If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to call our main office number at (423) 267-0466.