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Once at home

Recovery is slow, with some days better than others, and in some cases, it can last up to some weeks. A long recovery does not mean that something is going wrong, is the time your body needs to do so.

If you live alone, personal support is essential, at least during the first week after discharge from the hospital.

It is common to feel tired, and even a little depressed. This may be due to lack of energy or frustration related to the impact of the operation.

It is important to face each day calmly. Set short-term goals and try to be surrounded by family or friends. This way your mood will improve.

May be, you will feel some shortness of breath, and oscillations in the degree of pain. Shortness of breath can occur, for instance, when exercising. This sensation is expected after lung resection and tends to improve as the remaining lung compensates for the one that has been removed. In some patients, total recovery may take months to occur.

To accelerate and ensure your recovery we recommend:

  • Stay active: Gradually increase the amount of exercise each day during the first 30 days. Follow the instructions given by your chest physiotherapy before discharge

  • Avoid lifting heavy objects and any other movement or activity that produces or increases your pain.

  • Remember exercising your shoulder when feeling comfortable

  • Eat well: Eat regular, nutritionally balanced meals and drink, at least, 1,5 to 2 liters of water per day.

  • Pain: Follow the instructions provided in the hospital discharge report and take your pain medications regularly as directed. It is important that you can cough and breathe deeply without discomfort. Be sure to take the dose of the night so that sleep is refreshing.

It is also important, to be in contact with your general physician and your primary care nurse for him/her knowing that you are at home after surgery. They can help you in certain situations while controlling that everything goes well between consultations with your surgeon.

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