I was well-prepared for my mom’s shoulder surgery but nothing prepared me for her recovery. I was there to help her through it, but didn’t realize how difficult the aftermath could be due to her natural inclination to be independent and make her own decisions. She said she would take the anti-inflammatory medications, but the doctor-prescribed cold therapy to reduce swelling? No way would she put ice on it. “Too uncomfortable,” she said. Then I remembered that we could put a Maine Warmer in the freezer for a few hours. Gentle cold therapy helps reduce swelling after surgery. She reluctantly agreed but winced — for no reason other than negative anticipation — when I carefully placed the cooled neck warmer on her shoulder. Then she looked relieved and comfortable as the cooling pack eased her pain.
Fortunately we have the Internet today to help us prepare questions for the surgeon before and after surgery. I am happy to share two favorite sites for reliable information — the Mayo Clinic and The National Institutes for Health, Medline Plus both with extensive information about symptoms, causes, how to prepare for a medical visit, procedures, home remedies, and more.
It might be helpful to have someone with you when you go to see a surgeon. “Why didn’t I think to ask THAT question?” I often say to myself after seeing a medical professional. I am not alone. Others do the same thing because it is hard to think of all the questions one might ask at the time of the appointment. It might make it a little easier on you if you take a trusted friend or relative.