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Pain Management After Orthopedic Surgery

(757) 668-7000


Orthopedic procedures can be painful. Bones, tendons and ligaments are moved in surgery. Pain control is a priority for your healthcare team. The level of pain is different for each patient. Our team will work together with you and your child to try to keep pain at a level he can manage. Your CHKD patient education admission packet includes a booklet: Helping Your Child with Pain Control (see left). Please read this carefully. It includes a lot of good information about pain treatment. It also has things you can do to help your child cope with his pain.

Treatments include:

  • Medicines: Medicines are used to treat pain and discomfort from muscle spasms after bone surgery. Treatments for pain from muscle spasms and swelling are different than treatments for bone pain. Your nurse will review your child’s medicines, how they work and how often they are given. Some medicines are given by IV and others by mouth. Tell your nurse or doctor if you feel that the pain medications are not working.

  • Epidural catheters and nerve blocks: In some cases nerve blocks or epidural pain medications may be used during or after surgery for pain control. Your surgeon and anesthesia doctor will talk to you before surgery about the best plan for your child. 

  • Physical treatments are also important for pain control. These are some examples:
    • Position your child for comfort
    • Adjust noise, activity or lighting
    • Heat or cold
    • Physical therapy

    Your child may be afraid to move after surgery. It is important to return to normal activity as soon as possible to help the body heal. Moving after surgery reduces the chance of problems after surgery.  

  • Help with coping: Child Life Specialists can help your child cope with being in the hospital and having fear or pain. Activities or play help to decrease anxiety and fear. The pain control booklet has many great ideas to help you and your child build a plan that best fits his needs and interests.

Only your child knows how much pain he is feeling. Parents and family members know their child better than anyone. Your input and help is important. Together we can help your child during his hospital stay. We will work with you to make a plan for home care that provides your child as much comfort as possible as he heals and returns to his normal activities.

Disclaimer:This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.

Reviewed: 01/2018

(757) 668-7000