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You may have pain in your belly for a few days after surgery. If you had a laparoscopy, you may also have a swollen belly or a change in your bowels for a few days. After a laparoscopy, you may also have some shoulder or back pain. This pain is caused by the gas your doctor used to help see your organs better. To help with pain, your doctor will prescribe medicines.
After either surgery, it's important not to lift anything heavy for 1 week. How long it takes you to fully recover depends on the kind of surgery you had. After a laparoscopy, it usually takes about 1 week. After a mini-laparotomy, it usually takes 1 to 3 weeks. If you had a mini-laparotomy after having a baby, your recovery may take longer.
You will be protected from pregnancy right away. But it's best to wait to have sex until it feels comfortable. Ask your doctor when it's okay to have sex.
This care sheet gives you a general idea about how long it will take for you to recover. But each person recovers at a different pace. Follow the steps below to get better as quickly as possible.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for any changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:
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Current as of: February 11, 2020
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & Rebecca Sue Uranga
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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