Feeling Good after Cosmetic Surgery, Part 2
Prevention of post-operative nausea
Until recently there was no good way to prevent vomiting. One could only try to treat it after it started.
Like all other actions of steroids (Dexamethasone 4mg- 10 mg), the exact mechanism of how steroids helps in plastic surgery healing is not known. We do know that steroids will “calm down” all systems and that injections of steroids during surgery will decrease the incidence of PONV.
Scopolamine (Scope patch)
Commonly used to prevent motion sickness leading to nausea, these little patches are placed behind the ear and the drug is absorbed through the skin. They can help!
There are a number of antacids that can be given during a surgery (such as Zantac), and these will decrease nausea after an operation.
Drugs of this class, such as Zofran, can significantly reduce both the risk and duration PONV.
I have found this technique to be very helpful. Application of firm pressure between the two central wrist tendons and one inch below the hand can significantly improve nausea.
I use this anti-histamine as a last resort in cases of continued vomiting (where the patient cannot even keep a pill down). It can cause some respiratory depression, which in combination with other medications cosmetic patients take after plastic surgery can lead to problems.
What is the best thing to do? Ask your cosmetic plastic surgeon to use a combination of all of the above modalities for the best results. Maybe they know a trick of their own to help you keep things down.