Lung Resection

Care After

Refer to this sheet in the next few weeks. These instructions provide you with information on caring for yourself after your procedure. Your caregiver may also give you more specific instructions. Your treatment has been planned according to current medical practices, but problems sometimes occur. Call your caregiver if you have any problems or questions after your procedure.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • You may resume a normal diet and activities as directed.

  • Do not smoke or use tobacco products.

  • Change your bandages (dressings) as directed.

  • Only take over-the-counter or prescription medicines for pain, discomfort, or fever as directed by your caregiver.

  • Keep all follow-up appointments as directed.

  • Try to breathe deeply and cough as directed. Holding a pillow firmly over your ribs may help with discomfort.

  • If you were given an incentive spirometer in the hospital, continue to use it as directed.

  • Walk as directed by your caregiver.

  • You may take a shower and gently wash the area of your surgical cut (incision) with water and soap as directed. Do not use anything else to clean your incision except as directed by your caregiver. Do not take baths or sit in a hot tub.

SEEK MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You notice redness, swelling, or increasing pain in the incision.

  • You are bleeding from the incision.

  • You see pus coming from the incision.

  • You notice a bad smell coming from the incision or dressing.

  • Your incision breaks open.

  • You cough up blood or pus, or you develop a cough that produces bad smelling sputum.

  • You have pain or swelling in your legs.

  • You have increasing pain that is not controlled with medicine.

  • You have trouble managing any of the tubes that have been left in place after surgery.

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You have a fever or chills.

  • You have any reaction or side effects to medicines given.

  • You have chest pain or an irregular or rapid heartbeat.

  • You have dizzy episodes or fainting.

  • You have shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.

  • You have persistent nausea or vomiting.

  • You have a rash.

MAKE SURE YOU:

  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.