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USC - University of Southern California Cardiothoracic Surgery at University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine
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A Patient's Guide to Heart Surgery

Discharge Planning

Hospital room consultation with doctor and patient.

Returning Home

Getting discharged from the hospital is usually a great relief, but can sometimes cause some anxiety. Be assured that we would not discharge you unless we were confident in your progress and felt you were physically able to return home.

When you are discharged from the hospital, you will receive instructions about your home care from your surgery team and nursing staff. These will include your rehabilitation program, any medications you may require, your return appointment time and any other information you may need. This information will be added to your Patient Handbook, so be sure to have this at your bedside.

Convalescence at home usually takes four to six weeks depending on your condition before surgery. Minor aches and pains are normal in the first few weeks following surgery. If you are too uncomfortable to exercise, take your prescribed pain pills as directed 30 minutes to one hour before activity.

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