Pre & Post Surgery

Dr Tollesson and the whole Brain and Spine Surgery Queensland team are here to help you throughout the consultative, pre surgery, surgery and post surgery stages.

  • Consultation process
  • Pre-surgery
  • Surgery
  • Post-surgery and return to work
  • Healing and recovery & healing at home

Consultation Process

During your consultation with Dr Tollesson a physical and neurological examination is generally carried out. Imaging is viewed and if further tests are required referrals will be given and you will need a subsequent consultation to discuss the results. Dr Tollesson may also refer you to another specialist for further assessment and will see you after this assessment and all written correspondence has been received.

Dr Tollesson will discuss results of the tests and assessments with you and will explain your treatment options so that you can make an informed choice. A further consultation may be required if you have additional questions regarding your treatment.

If surgery is decided upon you will need to sign an informed consent.

Pre Surgery

You will be required to have blood tests prior to surgery and usually an ECG is performed prior or on the day of surgery. You may need to attend a pre-admissions appointment with a nurse to discuss surgery and to complete a health assessment and fill out paperwork regarding your medical history.

Please forward to our office any paperwork that Dr Tollesson is required to fill out on your behalf and allow sufficient time for him to complete this. There may be a charge depending on the paperwork required.

Our office is happy to facilitate medical certificates for you and your carer for time off work. There is no cost for this. Please email our staff details necessary for us to complete the certificates and allow sufficient time for this to be completed.

If you have questions regarding your recovery and return to work please discuss this with our surgical co-ordinator and she will liaise with Dr Tollesson regarding your specific treatment plan.

Our surgical coordinator will help you choose a suitable date for surgery and provide a quote for your specific procedure. We can also help you check your level of private health insurance and confirm the elements it covers so there are no surprises after your surgery. Prior to surgery you will need to sign our financial consent and make any necessary payment arrangements.

A confirmation letter outlining admission and fasting times and other important information will be emailed or posted to you prior to your surgery.

Surgery

You will be notified of your fasting time, medication information, your admission time and approximate time of surgery. After surgery Dr Tollesson will speak with your designated next of kin (NOK). You will be taken to recovery and then will either proceed to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) or to the ward, depending on the surgery undertaken and your specific medical needs.

Family members are encouraged to speak directly with nursing staff for information pertaining to visiting hours and ward/ICU protocols.

Post Surgery and Return to Work

After surgery you will be visited by the physiotherapist and they will assess your recovery and will do a treatment plan for you. You may be required to have other reviews, such as reviews from an Occupational Therapist, Speech Therapist, Dietician or Neurologist, for example.

You may also need further treatment at the rehabilitation unit.

Your treatment plan will be discussed with you during your recovery.

To read more about the simple steps you can take at home to ensure a safe healing process and help you to return to normal work and activity as soon as possible, visit healing and recovery.

Healing and Recovery

Healing will depend on the type of surgery and individual patients’ conditions and level of fitness. For example:

  • Recovery time for some surgeries can be shorter than for other, more complicated procedures.
  • It can take months to recover from major surgery, and some patients may experience a change in cognitive abilities, mood and behaviour.
  • For brain surgery, it is common for patients to feel confused, weak and poorly afterwards. Speech, physical and occupational therapy are often recommended.
  • After spinal surgery, some patients sometimes experience headache and neck pain. This might require painkillers.
  • We might recommend nutritional advice and physical therapy at an outpatient facility or at home for some patients.
  • Some ongoing and congenital conditions need regular follow-up checks with a doctor to seek the latest advice and treatments.

Healing at home

Once at home, there are also simple steps you can take to ensure a safe healing process and help to return to normal work and activity as soon as possible.

Safe wound handling:

  • Keep any wounds dry – this means adapting showers or baths or covering the wound
  • Avoid touching the wound, but, if you do, wash your hands before and after
  • Slight itching and discomfort is normal, but avoid ointments and skin lotions until the wound is healed

Contact your doctor if you notice:

  • painful swelling or redness
  • opening of the wound
  • discharge from the wound
  • high-temperature or fever
  • problems breathing
  • severe headaches
  • confusion or memory problems
  • unusual mood swings
  • nausea and vomiting
  • tingling sensation or numbness of the face, arms or legs
  • fainting or seizures
  • problems with bowel or bladder function

Our team are here to help you. If you have any questions or concerns at any time, please do not hesitate to call our office on (07) 3163 6030. We look forward to working with you to help you through your surgery, your healing and recovery.

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