• How can I help my dad post-surgery?

    Asked by kcbez on Friday, January 25, 2013

    How can I help my dad post-surgery?

    My dad had surgery to remove his esophagus last week and just returned home. He's having a really rough time - not sleeping much, in a lot of pain, and I'm really nervous. My mom is in contact with his doctors but I would appreciate any advice about how best to provide support to them, or any advice for them dealing with this. They are both overwhelmed I think.

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • ticklingcancer's Avatar

      What a tough situation to be in. He's is probably going to have some rough days for a while. Just be as supportive as you can. Ubnfortunately, there isn't much you can do to make this easier on him. Be sure and speak with the Dr's and let them know your concerns. They will be able to direct you on what the best course of action would be. You might ask them if there is something he can take to help him sleep. The better he sleeps, the quicker he'll recover.

      over 3 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      Talk to your mom, ask her what help she needs. You could do the laundry, cook, go grocery shopping, etc.

      over 3 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      I had SCC of a tonsil, with a radical neck dissection. The tonsil was taken out with about a 3" circle removed. It was a painful recovery and took me about a month to get "over" it. Although I am not the same and probably never will be. Sleeping was a problem with all the drainage and pain for about a month.

      It's a painful process to get over, and he's going to hurt. Some of it you just can't do much about, but after he gets used to it things will start to get a little better.

      We wish you the best, please post any questions you may have. There are lots of people here that have been through it that may help.

      over 3 years ago
    • SMT4's Avatar

      As others have said offering to help around in places that can lighten the load is a big help.One thing that really helped and made a difference for me when I was unable to sleep because of my neck surgery was a gift basket of favorite movies. If your dad has movies he loves popping them in at night or any time can help give an escape and put the focus on something positive. I know laying and watching a movie really helped to redirect the focus.

      over 3 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      As usual great advice has been given. Do you have any family and friends who can become part of a larger support network. Your mom will need this as much as your dad, being a primary caregiver is really tough, harder then being a patient, and given your age I suspect your parents are in their 80s. Contact the hospital social service department and see what services are available. Sign them up for meals on wheels, your dad may be having problems eating now, but your mom need good nutritious meals. Do you have a VNSA in your area, if yes contact them

      over 3 years ago
    • chiefomni's Avatar

      I suggest you take a look at a web site for the esophageal cancer education foundation www.fightec.org.

      In addition to a book called Esophagectomy Post Surgical Guide Q &A we have support groups for patients who have gone through this surgery and caregivers. The support groups meet by conference call on a monthly basis

      over 3 years ago
    • kcbez's Avatar

      Thanks for the all the answers. The day after I posted this question my dad was back in the hospital for emergency surgery from a massive infection and he's been in the hospital since then. He has been fighting the infection and also has several blood clots. So, while the initial surgery went smoothly, he is in much worse shape now that just after the surgery. It looks like it will be a long road for both my parents. Thanks again for all this advice.

      over 3 years ago

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