When you leave the hospital you will be given specific wound-care, dietary, and rehabilitation instructions, along with discharge instructions for driving, activity level, medication, and any further restrictions necessary. Your healthcare providers will also go over any symptoms that require immediate medical attention.
You will be given pain medication, blood-thinning medication, possibly antibiotics, and any medicines you were taking prior to the surgery. You may also be placed on medication, such as a beta-blocker, to help your heart's electrical system work more effectively, to control your blood pressure, and to reduce the stresses and strains on your heart.
It is also important that you plan on being driven home with the help of a relative or friend. You should not drive until you have had your first follow-up visit with your doctor.
You should also not perform any lifting greater than 10 pounds for at least four weeks, nor should you participate in any strenuous physical exercises or activities during this time period. Your healthcare team will establish a specific cardiac rehabilitation program for you. This program will begin once you have completely recovered from surgery.
The first follow-up visit with your doctor will be approximately 3-4 weeks after you leave the hospital, with continued periodic visits until you have fully recovered. However, you may have follow-up visits with your cardiologist earlier than this.
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