How to Prepare For An Open Heart Surgery?

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Open heart surgery is any kind of surgery where the chest is cut open and surgical procedures are done on muscles, valves, and arteries of the heart. Here is an account of certain things that should be taken care of before you get operated for open heart surgery.

Make sure you inform your doctor about all the medicines you are taking. These include:

  • Herbs
  • Vitamins
  • Over the counter drugs
  • Any other chemical or natural substance you take in daily routine.

Two weeks prior to surgery you will be told to stop smoking and abstain from the use of any blood thinning agents including Aspirin, naproxen, and ibuprofen.

Similarly, alcohol consumption also needs to be properly managed before you go into surgery as alcohol withdrawal can lead to serious complications.

A day before surgery you might be asked to wash with a special soap. This is to reduce any chances of infection due to bacteria present on the skin.

You will also be asked to stop any liquid or solid intake after midnight.

See Also: 5 Best Cardiologists in Lahore

What to Expect Post-Surgery:

Upon waking up after surgery you will find two to three tubes in your chest. These are meant for drainage of fluid from the area around the heart. You will also have an intravenous supply of fluids and a catheter for urine removal.
You will be connected to machines that are monitoring your heart.

You will spend the first night in the ICU and will be shifted to a room for next 3-7 days.
open heart surgery recovery

Recovery and Follow-up:

 As this is a major surgery your recovery and well being after this is largely dependant on how you take care of yourself at home. This should include the following:

Incision care:

 Taking proper care of the incision site is an extremely important part of the recovery phase. You should keep the incision site warm and dry. You can take a quick bath with warm water if the wound is healing properly and is not oozing.

It is important to go for follow up visits to your cardiac surgeon. You can find the best cardiac surgeons in Karachi, Lahore or any other main city of Pakistan via

Pain management:

Pain management is of utmost importance as it can increase the speed of recovery and decrease chances of complications. You can experience throat pain, muscle pain or pain at the site of the incision. Your doctor will prescribe you medications appropriate for you.

Get Enough Sleep:

You may experience trouble sleeping but proper rest is incredibly important for healing and recovery. Taking your pain medication half an hour before bedtime, limiting the use of caffeine and having a relaxing environment in your bedroom might help.


Most patients are recommended to participate in structured rehabilitation programs. These include dealing with stress, anxiety and improving quality of life with the help of exercise and reducing risk factors. You can find the best physical therapy and rehabilitation experts in Rawalpindi via

Post-surgical care is critically important because this is what ensures best outcomes of a surgery.

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She is pharmacist by profession and has worked with several health care setups.She began her career as health and lifestyle writer.She is adept in writing and editing informative articles for both consumer and scientific audiences,as well as patient education materials.