It is often helpful to hear what nurses and surgeons have to say about using this relaxation program with their patients. For us, hearing from you about what worked and how it helped is a valuable way to learn about your needs and improve what we are doing.
We hope you have gained useful skills that will help you through the process of surgery, from preparation through recovery. By doing this, you have become an active member of your health care team. Take pride in all your efforts for they will surely support your healing and recovery. We encourage you to make these skills a part of your everyday life - they will pay off in untold ways! Take care and be well.
Dr. Martin Karpeh, Beth Israel Medical Center
I have recommended the Preparing for Surgery Relaxation program to some of my patients before surgery who are extremely anxious. Research has shown that patients who learn to manage their stress prior to surgery are better able to manage pain postoperatively. This helps them heal faster both physically and emotionally. My patients have thanked me for referring them to this program.
Dr. Joseph Martz, Beth Israel Medical Center
My patients have benefited from this program. Naturally they often come in very anxious about the diagnosis and the outcome of surgery. Some are more concerned about the treatment that may follow surgery. Through the techniques they are taught in the Preparing for Surgery program they learn to positively cope with these feelings of anxiety and fear.
Daphne Ridley, RN, Orthopedic nurse, Beth Israel Medical Center
When we started our patient education classes on preparing for total knee replacement, we incorporated the holistic surgery program into our course. In a pilot study survey we did with our patients after they attended the program we found they were better able to manage pain after surgery, especially during ambulation. We were very pleased with these results.
Nance Wohlberg, RN, General surgery, Beth Israel Medical Center
Many of our surgical patients were unable to take the full preparing for surgery course before their surgery. We found that those who learned the special techniques designed for post-surgery were also better able to manage their pain. In some cases the pain medication worked more effectively and in others less pain medication was needed.
Jemma Innis, Staff Nurse, Beth Israel Medical Center
While taking care of patients who had the Preparing for Surgery class, I saw that we were able to get them moving sooner after surgery and they were able to move with less or more tolerable pain and discomfort.
When I came in to see Aurora I was really nervous, terrified of the surgery. What she did was very helpful, and she gave me some tapes to listen to that I found extremely helpful.
By the time of the surgery I didn't feel terrified going into it. I was nervous but the terror had dissipated. The relaxation techniques, breathing techniques and tapes were helpful and kept repeating "everybody is competent and caring" - and I thought okay I'll let them go ahead.
They said I could expect to have some pain after surgery and may need to take a bunch of Advil. As far as pain from the operation goes, I didn't have any. I was really surprised.
Now I feel like I have some tools that I could use so that if I had to have surgery again I wouldn't be so scared.
I came here because I was very fearful of having the surgery and very concerned about my recovery after the surgery. I had a wonderful experience both pre-operatively and post-operatively as a result of working through the program.
The surgery was less stressful than I thought it would be and I was less anxious. I was told exactly what to expect during the surgery, before the surgery, after the surgery. I had a lot of tools, relaxation techniques that were given to me, and I just knew that it would be a positive experience. It turned it around for me.
I did need pain medication immediately after the surgery for the first 12 - 18 hours. But then after that I didn't take anything but Tylenol. Everybody thought I would have needed more - everybody. Everybody was amazed - nobody could believe it.
The whole thing was very helpful. It gave me knowledge. It gave me insight, more insight, than what the doctor had provided for me, my private doctor. I think that knowing what to expect is half the battle. The tape was wonderful and the whole process made me feel more relaxed about what I was facing.
The program was good. I had had surgery some time before, and I have to say I was much calmer and less fearful going into this one even though this one was scarier because of the possibility of cancer. It really helped me just be calm.
After the surgery I used the breathing getting in and out of bed - that was very helpful. I think the good thing about the breathing was that I managed to stay calm and not tense up in the pain.
I had a positive experience. The program reduced my anxiety and gave me something to do prior to surgery. Most importantly I stopped fighting the surgery, the situation, and embraced it as something I wanted -- that's a long step to take. So when you are on a gurney going into surgery you are doing what you chose to do.