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After the procedure you will be taken to the recovery room for observation. Once your blood pressure, pulse, and breathing are stable and you are alert, you may be taken to the intensive care unit (ICU) or your hospital room.
Your pulses below the surgical site will be checked frequently to assist in monitoring blood flow to the limb. Your leg will also be monitored for color (pale or pink), warmth (coolness), sensations of pain, and movement.
The surgical incision may be tender or sore for several days after the procedure. Take a pain reliever for soreness as recommended by your physician.
You may be on special IV medications to help your blood pressure and your heart, and to control any problems with bleeding. As your condition stabilizes, these medications will be gradually decreased and discontinued as your condition allows.
Your diet will be advanced to solid foods as tolerated.
When your physician determines that you are ready, you will be moved from the ICU to a post-surgical nursing unit. Your recovery will continue to progress. Your activity will be gradually increased as you get out of bed and walk around for longer periods of time.
Arrangements will be made for a follow-up visit with your physician.
Once you are home, it will be important to keep the surgical area clean and dry. Your physician will give you specific bathing instructions.
You may be advised not to participate in any strenuous activities. Your physician will instruct you about when you can return to work and resume normal activities.
Your physician may want you to continue on specific medications, such as aspirin or clopidogrel (Plavix®), after the procedure.
Your physician may perform ultrasound examination(s) on your leg after surgery to monitor the new graft.
Notify your physician to report any of the following:
Fever and/or chills
Increased pain, redness, swelling, or bleeding or other drainage from the leg incision
Coolness, numbness and/or tingling, or other changes in the affected extremity