PATIENT RESOURCES / DR’s Blog

Are you worried about pain after plastic surgery?

I see a lot of patients in my practise for a variety of different types of plastic surgery. I think it is really important to take plenty of time to explain surgery options and expectations to my patients. One of the topics that comes up commonly is the recovery period. Typically, this includes “how long will I be off work or exercise?”, “what will the dressing care be like?”, “what is the follow-up plan?” and “what pain should I expect?”. Of course the answer to these questions depends on the type of plastic surgery that a patient is having. One thing I make sure to explain is how I will keep my patient comfortable after surgery.

So how do I manage pain after surgery? Well, it actually starts before surgery.

The first thing we do is discuss any concerns that you may have had in the past with any pain medications. For some people, there are drugs that don’t work as well. For others, certain drugs may cause side effects they don’t like. By discussing this, I am able to tailor the drug treatment better for my patients. I give my patients a prescription ahead of time, so they will have it and can relax after surgery rather than scrambling to get it. Everything has very clear directions to make it easy.

Before surgery

The next thing I do to make sure that you are comfortable after surgery is to give you several medications before surgery. There are several different types of pain receptors in the body. Different classes of drugs work on different pain receptors. By using several different types of medications before surgery, we can keep you more comfortable during and after. I had the help of an anesthesiologist with a subspecialty interest in pain management when designing the ideal regimen.

During Surgery

The post-operative pain reduction strategies continue during the surgery. This includes the different medications that the anesthesiologist gives to provide long-term pain relief. The other thing that I do when possible, is to block the pain right at the source. I use a long acting pain reliever to do so. This is injected right at the site to provide local anaesthesia so you don’t get the same pain stimulus in the first place. This helps to minimize other drugs that you need during surgery (making your wake-up even easier) and keeps you more comfortable after.

After Surgery

Finally, the drugs that you get after surgery are tailored to your needs. I again employ the strategy of using multiple different medications so that you can get as much pain relief as possible without the side effects. The biggest benefit is limiting the amount of opioids that people require. This includes percocet, codeine, oxycodone, tramadol, diludid, demerol, etc. These are great drugs for keeping you comfortable but can cause sedation and constipation. By using other medications, it allows my patients to be kept comfortable while minimizing these problems.

The final added-touch to keep you comfortable?

At your follow-up

On occasion, a patient needs drains after surgery. Although I don’t use them often, when I do, I want the removal to be as comfortable as possible. I see a lot of patients that have a lot of apprehension about drains. I think they read information on-line that worries them. Quite frankly, I just don’t get it! A small drop of freezing goes a long way. Most of my patients say, “that’s it?!?” when they realize I have pulled the drain out and they felt almost nothing.

What is my philosophy on pain and surgery?

I want my patients to love their plastic surgery results. However, I want them to enjoy their experience at the same time. It’s a great transformation and an exciting time for people. By planning the different steps that I described, I think we have come a long way to making that a reality. I address the individual needs of each patient and I make every effort to keep my patients as comfortable as possible.

If you are interested in a private consultation to discuss plastic surgery options, please contact Dr. Rodger Shortt to arrange an appointment at 905-849-4282 or info@drshortt.com.

Dr Rodger Shortt is a plastic surgeon servicing Toronto, Oakville, Mississauga, Burlington, Milton, Hamilton and Georgetown. He strives to provide his patients the best care and excellent plastic surgery results. He is one of only a few plastic surgeons in Canada with a top rating on RateMD, RealSelf and Ontario Doctor Review. Dr Rodger Shortt is a specialist plastic surgeon trained in cosmetic surgery and reconstructive surgery. He specializes in breast surgery, breast augmentation, breast fat transfer, mommy makeover, tummy tuck, body contouring, breast reconstruction and cosmetic surgery of the face. He is the Director of Cosmetic Surgery Training at McMaster University and an Assistant Clinical Professor. If you are interested in a consultation with Dr Shortt please contact as at 905-849-4282 or visit www.drshortt.com.

Reviews

I recently received breast augmentation and am extremely happy with the results

I recently received breast augmentation and am extremely happy with the results! Dr. Shortt and his staff are wonderful and very talented. I definitely recommend this surgeon to anyone who is interested in cosmetic surgery.

Dr. Shortt is a very talented and compassionate doctor

Dr. Shortt is a very talented and compassionate doctor. He takes the time to listen to your concerns, and he lets you know what’s possible and what isn’t – he will never do something that will make you look fake or “done.” Dr. Shortt likes to say that he will make you into a better version of yourself, not someone else. He goes above and beyond to achieve your goals and truly cares about his patients.

I had a septorhinoplasty done to correct my breathing and the appearance of my nose. I have always been insecure about the size and shape of my nose – I had a bit of a bulbous tip and a prominent dorsal hump. I am so thrilled with the results of my surgery! In addition to breathing better, I am also feeling a lot more confident. I used to freak out if anyone took a photo of me from the side, but now I actually encourage it!

The support staff at Briarwood are wonderful, too. They make the experience comfortable and easy.

I am extremely happy that I finally took this step

I just want to say Thank you so much for doing such a wonderful job on my tummy tuck (abdominoplasty). I am very pleased! The care I received prior to, during, and after my surgery has been great. Dr. Shortt and the stuff at Briarwood cosmetic surgical centre have been very thorough and detail oriented when tending to my needs, concerns and questions. I am extremely happy that I finally took this step and LOVE my results. I wouldn’t have changed a thing and am glad I chose Dr. Shortt for my surgery.

Dr Shortt did an awesome job

I recently had a breast reduction and am so happy with the final result – Dr Shortt did an awesome job!

Dr Roger Shortt is a Genius, I am so happy with the result

I recently had a scar revision surgery to repair scars from a bilateral mastectomy. Dr Roger Shortt is a Genius, I am so happy with the result it is more than I could have hoped for. I am so grateful to Dr Shortt for his empathy kindness and professionalism. His staff reflected that image and were helpful, knowledgeable and efficient. Even though I had a bilateral I feel very happy when I see myself in the mirror. That says everything.

Best Choice I Made!

The stretch marks, loose skin and a deformed belly button from my twin pregnancy really affected my self confidence. Dr. Shortt helped me get that “old me” feeling back! He is patient, professional and truly cares for you during the recovery process. I always felt that Dr. Shortt and his team were there when I needed questions answered. Before I went for my surgery, I had no idea how important the weeks and months after would be. Now, I couldn’t be happier that I chose Dr. Shortt to be my doctor. He also makes sure that you know what to expect and that made the journey so much easier for me. Best choice I made! I finally feel like myself again.

Extremely pleased to share my recent experience with Dr. Shortt

Extremely pleased to share my recent experience with Dr. Shortt and his professional staff. The entire experience was more than I had hoped it would be. From beginning consultation to follow-up visits. Dr. Shortt and his staff are highly recommended for any results you are hoping to achieve. This team is the very best!

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