Recuperating From A Surgical Procedure? How Can You Avoid Post-Op Infection?

Posted on: 1 March 2017

If you're planning a surgical procedure for the near future, you may be anxious after hearing statistics about the incidence of post-operative infection. Although the vast majority of procedures go off without a hitch, in some cases, you could be dealing with infection at the surgical site for some time longer, compromising your ability to recover. Fortunately, there are some simple steps you can take to reduce your risk of harm. Read on to learn more about the steps you can take to minimize your risk of post-operative infection while recuperating at home, as well as some of the services available to Medicaid patients that can help you along the way.

How can you avoid post-operative infections at home?

In addition to checking out your hospital's facilities and procedures before undergoing surgery, you'll want to take steps to guard against post-surgical infection while recuperating at home. Before your procedure, investing in a top-to-bottom house cleaning can help clear out any pathogens that may be lurking for you upon your return. Don't forget to thoroughly clean your toilets, bathtubs, and pet areas before your procedure – not only will this rid your home of germs, it should reduce your urges to go on any cleaning sprees while you're still recovering.

You'll also want to avoid contact with any immunocompromised persons (or anyone suffering from a contagious illness) during your recovery. Those whose immune systems are less able to fight off infection could unwittingly transport bacteria or viruses to your home, while those with contagious illnesses – even if not specifically antibiotic-resistant – could give you an infection that reduces your body's ability to heal itself following surgery.  

How can Medicaid services help you avoid post-operative infection?

If you're eligible for Medicaid benefits, you may be able to acquire some additional assistance in the form of in-home nursing care. Although Medicaid won't pay for a 24/7 caregiver, its coverage can provide you with the services of a home health nurse who can come by several times a day to administer medication, check your wound, change bandages, and other medical tasks you may not feel up to handling on your own just yet. 

These services can often be the difference between a lengthy hospital stay and the ability to recuperate at home; and because hospitals (despite their strict sterilization protocol) can be dense with germs and pathogens, recovering in the privacy of your own home can further reduce your risk of post-operative infection or complications.