First Day After Colon Surgery

First Day After Colon Surgery

The day after surgery, the goal is to walk five times, eat meals in a chair, and be out of bed for four hours.

Eating and Drinking

The doctor will decide if you are ready to begin eating. Sugar-free chewing gum can help your bowels get back to normal faster. You should chew sugar-free gum at least 3 times a day. Do not drink carbonated drinks or use straws.


Your goal is to sit in a chair for all meals and walk in the hall 4-5 times. You should expect to spend a total of 4 hours out of bed. Time out of bed refers primarily to time spent walking and sitting in a chair. Your Healing Partner can help you walk after getting instructions from your nurse.


Continue to use your incentive spirometer and do your deep breathing exercises 10 puffs every 1 hour while awake.

Pain Management

In addition to medicine through your IV, you may receive pills for pain. Non-narcotic medication will be used most often since they do not delay your organs’ return to normal functioning in the same way that narcotics do. Narcotics can slow your body’s return to normal. Non-narcotic pain medications will be used most often following surgery. If an epidural catheter was placed for pain management this may be removed on day one or day two.

Blood Clot Prevention

You will continue to wear the inflatable massaging leg coverings except when you are walking. You will begin to receive injections to prevent blood clots.

Other Things to Expect

Everyone who may touch you or anything in your room should wash their hands or use hand sanitizer first. This includes all visitors.