Way in advance (like, as soon as you sign on!)

No smoking anything! Nicotine, marijuana. Do not insult your lungs as they are so important to healing, oxygenating the areas of the body that need to heal. Also avoid pneumonias after surgery.

Two weeks in advance

Vitamins – C, D; Arnica montana herbal supplement; Colace stool softener

Avoid for 2 weeks – To minimize oozing and bruising

NSAIDS like Aleve. Aspirin. Herbals like Turmeric, Vitamin E

One to two nights before

Take Dulcolax (1-2 pills) to empty bowels prior to surgery

Day Of! (45 minutes) – Wait to see what your surgeon/anesthesiologist are planning so no interference with medical plan

Tylenol (650-1000mg), Zofran (4-8mg), Possibly Gabapentin


Take your pain medicine!

Limiting pain will make you feel more comfortable, less depressed and the overall positive vibes totally help your recovery. Best pain management also aids in sleep which we all know is important. Mental positivity feeds physical health and healing – absolutely! Pain management includes narcotics provided by your surgeon. Non-narcotic medication includes Tylenol and Aleve around the clock. Muscle relaxers like Metaxalone, Flexeril, UItram may help.

Anti-inflammatories assist pain management regimen.

Turmeric is an herbal anti-inflammatory. Another helpful anti-inflammatory is Arnica montana which comes in pill form. 30c is most therapeutic and Boiron brand calls for 5 small pills 3x/day. Arnica also comes as a cream or gel that is great to massage into treated areas, particularly the back. Eating pineapple or taking Bromelain which is the herbal in pineapple also help reduce swelling and bruising. Whole Foods is a great place to go to get herbals and fruit!

Bowel comfort - to avoid constipation, bloating and acid after abdominal surgery

Narcotics and reduced physical movement exacerbate constipation. Colace stool softener twice daily will ease passing your bowels when that starts happening. Allow several days prior to passing your bowels as you are eating so little for days around the time of surgery. Start laxatives within days after surgery to help getting bowels moving and avoid constipation and anxiety. Dulcolax is easy, 1-3 pills a couple times a day. Miralax may be added in as need. Stronger laxatives are in the reserves, like Magnesium citrate. Only use enemas if cleared by your surgeon. Antacids may be needed if you experience burning in your stomach after the stress of surgery and taking medications. Tums are also great for calcium supplementation. Over the counter omeprazole/Prilosec once daily is easy.

Optimize healing with vitamins

A daily multivitamin makes this easy. Vitamin C is the most important to healing.


Diet is an important component to the medication discussion. High protein, low carbohydrate, low gluten, low salt and hydration are important. Bland diet early on is best to avoiding indigestion. Comfort foods like chicken soup truly heals. Fiber rich dried fruits are delicious and help the bowels.

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