Laparoscopic Appendectomy Post-Op Instructions

It’s very satisfying to provide answers to patients questions through this website.  I’m more than happy to provide free advice for patients with medical questions.  However, because of the large volume of questions I receive, I can no longer answer questions on this page.  Please use the “Ask Dr. Buck” form.  Thank you!

You have had a “Laparoscopic Appendectomy”. This just means your appendix was removed using a small camera and small instruments through 3 separate small incisions. After having your appendix removed, there are no limitations on your diet. After the surgery, you may feel full or nauseated easily with a large meal. The bowels usually need some time to begin functioning normally again, so the first one or two days after the surgery this is normal. If it persists beyond one or two days, you should call the office for advice.

The incisions have “Steri-Strips” (or small tape) across them, and a plastic adhesive dressing over the top to protect them from water. You may wash over the plastic dressings in the shower. Please do not soak in a tub or bath as this may loosen the plastic dressings and they may fall off, leaving the incisions exposed. After about 48-72 hours, the incisions in the skin are watertight, but they are still very weak, so it’s important to protect them for about 7 days. Leave the plastic dressings on for 72 hours.  After 72 hours, you may remove the plastic and underlying gauze.  Leave the Steri-strips in place for 7 days after your surgery.  You may wash gently over the Steri-strips with soap and water, but be sure to dry them well after showering.  After 7 days, if they have not fallen off by themselves, you may remove them.

Your activity level should be reduced the first two weeks after the surgery. The incisions are about 60% strength of normal tissue at 6 weeks. I generally advise not to lift anything more than 15lbs. for about 6 weeks. You can increase your activity to moderate exercise after the first two weeks. I often advise to “let pain be your guide” in your recovery. This just means you can steadily increase your activity as long your pain is under control. Often after surgery you may have a few days where you feel really well. This is usually when people increase their activity level and the following day feel very sore or very tired. This is normal. It’s OK to do this, just be aware you may experience these “ups and downs” for a few weeks. Just as long as you are improving from week to week, you are on the right road to recovery.

If you should have fevers, chills, increasing nausea, vomiting, or abdominal pain please contact the office. If you have any other questions or concerns during your recovery, please do not hesitate to either email or call us at anytime. Our phone system electronically and immediately alerts us to new messages 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so if you do call after hours please leave a message and someone will return your call. Please call the office to make your post-operative appointment about 14 days from the surgery.

It was a pleasure helping you with you care.

-Dr. Buck


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  1. I had a lap appendectomy on 04/24/12. I am experiencing bloating and gas which I think is making it hard for me to breathe fully. I am guessing this is normal. The dressing looks good, there is no swelling or bleeding and no abdominal pains (experienced prior to removal). I do not have a fever or chills but am not yet interested in food, probably because of the bloating. Is it possible that the contrast ingested for the ct scan is still in my system and causing this massive gas and occasional diarrhea? Is it ok to take anti gas pills? I am not yet comfortable sleeping yet. Are these normal post op symptoms? Your feedback is appreciated.

    • Hi Michelle,
      For the most part these symptoms sound like fairly normal early post-operative symptoms. If you have INCREASING pain, bloating and no flatus, I think this would be something to be concerned about. If you are improving day after day, then I think you are probably on the right track. If you don’t improve, you should seek medical attention. Thanks for the comment.

      Dr. Buck

      • I just had a lap app 9 days ago I still can’t lay on my sides. When I take a deep breath it hurts in my right kidney area. It feels like my kidney is either cramped or being twisted. I am 7 months pregnant so very worried about blood clots. I also have a bad headache and,pain between,my shoulder blades.

        • Hi Vikki,

          I’m concerned about a couple of things. First is the development of an abscess, and second is a possible gallbladder attack. Either way, I think it’s best if you see a physician as soon as you can…especially since you are 7 mo. pregnant. It’s always possible it’s just post-op pain, but if it’s getting worse, I think it’s best to see your surgeon.

          Take care,

          -Dr. Buck

      • Hello Dr, Im sorry I have to ask you this way for some reason I could not get to the form.

        I just had my Appendectomy Saturday. It was not ruptured. I was sent home the next day. Today I have had bouts of feeling fine, then feeling terrible. Last night I ran a Temp of 102.9 and had a sharp pain under my right rib. I called the Dr’s call line and they told me to take some IB and if the fever goes down Im fine. It did. Now today I still have sharp pain under my right rib when I try and take a deep breath. Throughout the day I have had minor fevers and light headedness but seems I can control it with IB.

        • Hi Allen,

          Sorry I’m getting back to you so late! Hopefully you’ve had your issue resolved by now. It sounds like you were having pain from gas put in the abdomen during the surgery. Hopefully it’s much better now.

          -Dr. Buck

  2. Hey dr Buck.. Here i am day 5 post op..! During my lap appendectomy.. I leaked liquid faeces into the wound.. Subsequentley i have been on anti biotics til now.. I am suffering severe discomfort.. Raised temt and bloating with no flatus..! Should i worry.??

    • Hey Mychal,

      Sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner! I didn’t see your post until now… I assume you have been treated already. Sounds like you had a wound infection…is that right?

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hello Dr. Buck, Just a quick question I had a Lap appendectomy 2 years ago this past january and I actually was jumping up and down yesterday from the football game and now my right side where my appendix once was is irritated and it it possible that I tore the healed tissue or possible for it to be scar tissue and what damage could this cause? Thank you.

        • Hi Christina,

          I would bet that you injured a muscle on the right side. I highly doubt it has anything to do with the appendix surgery. If you have an incision there, it’s possible some of the scar tissue in the incision tore, but still unlikely. I would give it some rest and motrin/ibuprophen for a couple days and see what happens.

          Take care.

          – Dr. Buck

  3. Hello,

    I came across this forum because I was looking up symptoms 1 week post op for my lap appendectomy. Just today, 1 week out I am feeling pain tender to touch in the same area, in fact the same kind of pain. Maybe its a little bit lower. I did return to work today but had a lot of discomfort sitting for the whole day, only worked 5.5 hours. Should I be worried or is this normal? I have my post op follow up in a week, can I address it then?

    • Hi Lisa,

      It is normal post op laparoscopic appendectomy to have some pain in that area. Even though your incisions are in different locations, most of the surgery is done in the right lower abdominal area. If you are experiencing fevers, chills, and increasing abdominal pain, this may be something you should investigate further with a call or trip to your doctor. If the pain is still there from after the surgery, but slightly improving….you most likely are on the right track. It is also pretty normal to start increasing your activity after any surgery, and experience discomfort. You may want to have a lighter workload for a couple days and see if you are feeling better. I hope this helps clear some questions up for you. Although I provide some guidance, since I can’t evaluate you in person, if you are still concerned you should seek medical attention.

      -Dr. Buck

  4. today is about 3 1/2 days after appendix taken out by op laparoscopic appendectomy i still have lots of pain in the same area of why i first went to the emergency and get really bad headaches at night time and in early morning other than that everthing looks good. is this normal also i still cant go to washroom and feel really bloated Could you please respond to this thank you 1 worried person

    • Hi,

      Sorry I’m responding so late! It can be normal to have pain in the same area after your laparoscopic appendectomy….however, it should be improving every few days. If it does not improve over the first week, you should seek medical attention. The headaches are often due to either a substance or food that you usually have everyday, and because of the surgery, your normal routine is upset. It could also be due to some of the pain medication you are taking. If this does not improve within the first week, I would also ask your doctor about this. Finally, it’s pretty common for people to have constipation after the operation because of the pain medication and also because of the inflammation and surgery on the bowels. If you are still passing gas, but having trouble with a bowel movement, that’s pretty normal. If you are not passing any gas at all, you should seek medical attention. I usually have my patients take senokot the first few days to keep them from having trouble with bowel movements. You may want to take an over the counter laxative for a couple days until you return to normal.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  5. Had my lap appendectomy exactly 4 weeks ago. My incisions are healed I have not had any pain in three weeks and feel 100% back to normal. I have not been exercising at all post op, but am normally very active. Is it ok to now go back to lifting weights and running per my usual daily routine before the appendectomy?

    • Hi Wilt,

      At this point I think you can start into some activity like light jogging or light weight routine. It’s important to ease back into your normal routine over the next couple of weeks and not just go back to your regular activity. Pay attention to your body, and if you do something that either hurts at the time of the activity, or the next day, you should probably take it easy for a bit and in a couple of days return to a lighter version of that activity. Glad to hear your laparoscopic appendectomy went well! Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  6. Hi
    It will be one week tomorrow since I had my appendix removed. I tried to contact my Dr but he is out of the office today. I am wondering, is it normal to feel kind of out of breath when I try to do anything, no appetite, I still have not had a bowel movement since the surgery, and just in general do not feel well, no energy either. I do not have pain other than slight soreness, no fever, no vomiting, no chills, etc. Just general feeling of not feeling well. Is this normal a week after surgery? Thank You!

    • Hi Ashley,

      There are several things that could be going on after your laparoscopic appendectomy. I think most LIKELY not having a bowel movement for a week could be the major issue. Of course, there are things that could be causing that, which may need to be investigated. However, one thing after any operation that is always on my mind is DVT or “deep venous thrombosis” leading to a PE or “Pulmonary Embolism”. This can cause shortness of breath and an overall poor feeling. This is a blood clot in the leg veins that can break off and travel to the lungs, blocking blood flow to some of the lung tissue. These can be very dangerous. Since I don’t know your medical history and can’t examine you, I think it would be best if you were seen in the ER for this. Like I said, it could be your bowels, but you don’t want to miss something serious. Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  7. Hi!

    I just had lap appen 3 weeks ago exactly. Feel fine. The incision below belly button got infected. It’s under control now and doc says will heal eventually. I have a tiny open hole still. I haven’t done any working out except a few 90 min walks w my dog. I was working out about 8-10 times a week pre op. Will it be safe to start playing volleyball next weekend (week 4 post op)? I was planning on biking and doing some elip work early next week as well.

    Thanks for any information!


    • Hi David,

      I think you are OK to start light biking and light elliptical work about 4 weeks after your laparoscopic appendectomy. I would caution you to start slow the first day and pay attention to how you are feeling the next day. Then you will have a better gauge about what you can do. If you are really tired and sore the next day, you should back off on the intensity. If you are feeling OK, then you can continue that intensity level and slowly increase it from there. Make sure the incisions continue to improve and if they open back up obviously cease your activity until you see physician.
      Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  8. Hello, hows it going?

    I am 2 weeks post laproc/append surgery and feel great. However, one thing that irks me is that my bowel movements still haven’t gone back to normal, I mean 100% back to normal, circa pre-surgery. I seem to go pretty frequently, and sometimes I ‘feel’ like i go, and (sorry for being gross) gas escapes, like a bubbling out, and nothing is in the toilet except for a few drops of a clear liquid. On the days that i eat yogurt (heard about the probiotics) I still go often but it is more normal/defined. Is this normal? Will my bowels ever return to normal? That is the only thing that I am not up to speed with and again, like I said, I feel great. Also, slow sex hurts a little above the groin (have to start slow, of course). I think it is due to the contact. Is that normal? Thanks Dr. Buck!

    • Hello,

      I think since you are only 2 weeks post laparoscopic appendectomy it is still early to tell. As long as there is no infection or complication, in time your bowels will return to normal. Everyone is a little different regarding how and when they return to normal after their appendectomy, but it is within the realm of “normal” to not be quite back to regular bowel movements just yet. If you have recurring fevers and chills with increasing pain I would recommend you see your surgeon as soon as possible. If you are feeling well (which it sounds like you are), then I would give it another week or two before you are concerned. I hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  9. Hi I am almost at 6 weeks in my healing after lap appendectomy. i went swimming about 5 days ago and slipped in the pool jolted to recover back to my feet and when I got out my stomach started aching. For the past couple of days I’ve experienced light headness, dizziness and abdominal pain. About a week ago i accidentally ripped out the stitch on my left abdominal incision. i haven’t had any bleeding, eating, drinking and bowel movements are all normal. Is this possible that I maybe just pulled a muscle?

    • Hi Kristi,

      Most likely you pulled on the tissue underneath that was put back together. It’s the strong layer of the abdominal wall, and it’s sewn back together just like the stitches you see in your skin. That layer was healing, and a sudden pull will cause you to ache for a couple of days. Six weeks after a laparoscopic appendectomy, all the tissue that was put back together is about 60% strength….so it’s still weak and can tear easily. I’m not sure what to make of your light headedness and dizziness, but the abdominal pain is probably from a small tear of the healing tissue. If you continue to experience dizziness, I think you should see your physician.

      Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • its not constant dizziness just for a few seconds when I stand up. The same with the lightheadedness.

        • Thanks for all your help~

  10. Hello, doctor.

    I just had the laparoscopic appendectomy yesterday and was released today. Seems they used a glue on my incisions rather than stitches. Doesn’t seem to be any tape over them or gauze or anything of the sort. Is it safe to shower, or should I cover the incisions? Or should I just sponge-bathe for the next week?

    Also, do you recommend Norco as a pain relief medication? I’ve taken two so far and they don’t seem to do much aside from make me drowsy.

    Your opinions would be greatly appreciated.

    • Hi Peter,

      Your doctor probably used Dermabond. There are usually stitches on the inside, and instead of tape or plastic over the incisions, some surgeons use Dermabond, which is a liquid that is applied over the incision to keep them clean and protected from the environment. It is safe to shower over them, but you shouldn’t take a bath for a couple weeks. Norco is what I usually prescribe to my patients after a laparoscopic appendectomy. If it’s not enough, you should talk to your physician about changing to a different medication. There are other options, however they are prescription medications. I generally use oxycodone if someone is not having enough pain relief with Norco.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks very much, doctor. Showered, shaved, got a haircut, and said goodbye to my “hospital face.” Thank you again.

  11. Hi Dr. Buck,

    Glad to have found this site. It is 7 weeks since my lapro appendectomy. I started back to the gym gradually, just slow walking on the treadmill & then some light elliptical. Just started back to a Piloxing class that I had done for a year prior to the surgery, but going at a slower pace. Wondering when I can do ABS exercises? Can barely see the outside incisions but don’t want to harm the inside incisions & wondering when you are at full strength. Thanks!

    • I usually recommend my patients don’t do any heavy lifting or exercises until 6 weeks post laparoscopic appendectomy. Since you are 7 weeks out, I would recommend to my patient to ease into whatever exercise it is you want to do…this includes ab work. Do a VERY light ab workout, and wait a couple of days to see how you feel. If you don’t have pain during the exercise, and no incisional pain for a couple days after, then I would recommend to increase the activity slowly over the next few weeks. Full strength of the incision takes over 1 year, but at about 1 year it will be around 85% strength. Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  12. Hello.. I just had an lap app on the 3rd… I feel like my abdomen is still swollen.. I also feel lighthearted when I stand up or walk for a period of tineit also feels like I am.tense and do not let myself take deep breaths. I do.have a history of anxiety could the stress of the surgery just set of my.anxiety or is this something should be.concerned about… how long.does the swelling and soreness last..thanks

    • Hi Denise,

      It is common for you to be swollen at your incisions at this point, but it sounds like you have a couple other things going on. The light-headedness and difficulty with deep breaths concerns me enough to recommend you see a physician as soon as possible. It could be just dehydration and normal post-operative swelling, but I would also be concerned about things like deep venous thrombosis and pulmonary embolism. Since I can’t examine you myself, I recommend you see a physician today. It is possible that it is anxiety related, but I think it’s best to see someone to determine that.

      -Dr. Buck

  13. Hello Dr. Buck! I had a lap appendectomy on July 4th. Later that night I experienced sharp chest pains in the upper right side. I chalked this up to gas pain, however hospital policy was to do CT scan with contrast. Results were something of the nature of air bubbles and collapsed lung bases. Said that this is not uncommon with this surgery. I also experienced difficulty voiding, therefore had foley inserted yet again for 24hrs. I have had my fair share of surgerys and always have problems with my bladder. Two years ago I had an abdominal hysterectomy with BSO ( just an FYI to give you some background). Since my appendectomy, I have been experiencing what I would considerate moderate amt of pain. I usually have some constipation issues. My prior to surgery was on July 2nd and I did not pass any stool until July 6th which was a small amt of hard stool. Again some hard stool the next couple days. I was put on Percocet for pain and know this can cause constipation. I stopped taking it a couple days ago. Finally, today I felt well enough to eat something other than soup. Not sure if it’s related but a few hours after I started experiencing awful cramps followed by dirrhea times six and nausea. Since my surgery I have had terrible abd pains and sharp pains in my fight upper lung when I take deep breaths. I feel like I’m having an awful time reccuping from such a simple surgery. I felt better a week out of being cut open from hip to hip with my hysterectomy. I feel like it could be gas pains, but is this normal a week after surgery? I have my post op appt tomorrow, but am looking for any and all suggestions. Thank you for your time .

    • Hi Stephanie,

      Sounds like you’ve had a rough couple of weeks! Sorry to hear that! Leftover gas from the laparoscopic appendectomy can give you the initial pain you were experiencing, but it should be gone by now. There are some other things that can cause the pain in the chest with breathing such as pneumonia, pulmonary embolism and abdominal abscess (infection) in the right upper abdominal area affecting the chest. It sounds like your major issue is the constipation. I think because you were constipated for so long, when you started eating regular food your bowels tried to dump everything out at one time since you were so “backed-up” if you will. That’s what can account for the multiple bouts of diarrhea. I definitely would recommend you seeing your surgeon today if you are still experiencing right chest pain…you should not have this type of pain this far out from the surgery.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hello, Dr. Buck! I thought I would finally update you on my long journey. Since my post, I followed up with my surgeon who did a repeat CT and ultrasound. They found a large hematoma. I was hospitalized, and put on a few IV antibiotics. A few days later was released from the hospital. This only lasted a few days until I became very uncomfortable again. I decided to follow up with my family doctor as I did not care for my surgeons bedside manner. I was sent to the hospital for stat lab work, where they found the abscess had not dissipate as they had originally thought. Also, an abscess was found. So here I am being hospitalized yet again. I was still having difficulty with food, become very nauseated, so they decided to do a Hida scan while I was there. This showed my gallbladder did not function either. I was scheduled to have a cholecystectomy the next day. They decided to remove the abscess before, so this was done through needle aspiration in the CT scan. I was supposed to be in a twilight state, however that didn’t work, so it was two hours of torture, and unsuccessful. Due to the placement of the abscess, they had to go through my back to get to my abd., however my ureter was wrapped around it so they decided to stop. The following day I had my gallbladder removed and the abscess. Anyway, just wanted to let you know how things turned out. I’ve spent the majority of my summer in the hospital. I have had most of my organs removed: thyroidectomy, hysterectomy/BSO, appendectomy, cholecystectomy, tonsilectomy….and I’m only 30!!! Question, I was diagnosed with graves disease, hence the thyroidectomy; would this have and connection with other organs failing? I wasn’t sure since it’s autoimmune. Anyway, I am grateful for this website, and your time, thank you again!

  14. Hi Dr. Buck,

    Good morning. Hope you are doing well.

    Felt this site very informative for patients like us. I had appendectomy on 30th June,2012 ..10 days back. I felt i was recovering well. Took 3 days rest at home and got back to my IT work from 4th day. Initially felt tired soon with office work. From past 2 days, I had to travel an hour to reach my office. On the first day itself after returning home, I got Diarrhea even though i am not taking anything spicy. I wanted to know if this is something common post-appendectomy and can be normal or i need to visit my Doctor. Waiting for your valuable input on this.


    • Hi Anand,

      I’m glad you enjoy the website! It’s pretty common for people to return to work or activity after a seemingly small operation like a laparoscopic appendectomy (because they are small incisions, many people feel they should be right back to their normal activity in a couple of days), and then end up feeling very fatigued for the next couple of weeks. Having general anesthesia combined with an abdominal operation is pretty taxing on the body, even though they are small incisions. It sounds like you are doing quite a bit of activity (in the sense of work), and that can really drain your energy after an operation. I usually tell my patients to start out with 1/2 day of work, or ease into a full day over about 1 week. Do a 1/2 day, and see what you feel like the next day. Give your body 24 hours to react to your activity….even if it’s a walk or a hike…the effects might not be apparent until 24 hours later when you feel like you got hit by a truck!

      I’m not too surprised about the diarrhea, as your bowels did have surgery done on them, so they are trying to get back to normal too. However, you don’t want to discount the diarrhea as nothing if it continues more than 24 hours. After a surgery like this, people can develop what is called “C-Diff” colitis. That’s just means you have a bacterial infection in the colon. It can range from mild to fatal (most of the time in healthy people it is mild to moderate), but you don’t want it to continue too long without treatment. I tell my patients that if it persists after 24 hours, you should seek medical attention.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks Dr. Buck for your quick response. I had pills to control diarrhea and will wait till next day morning. If things come under control then I feel better, else I may have to visit my doctor. As I mentioned in my earlier query saying I started day journey to reach office 2 hrs a day (to n fro). Is it OK if I can do an overnight journey to reach my home in this situation.


  15. Dr Buck, my husband had laparoscopic appendectomy on 7-12, with umbilical hernia repair. he checked himself out of hospital yesterday so far doing ok no fever, but is peeing a lot, and complaining wants to sleep to rest an not pee soo much. passing lots of gas, which is good. more he drinks more he pees and doesn’t want to. did eat waffle and giving him lots of jello . doesn’t want to get dehydrated but doesn’t want to be getting up & down so much . would gator aid or pedalite fluids ok. Is there anything else to help him rest more ? He is not a very good patient. This is the 1st time in hospital. also he is 66. thanks

    • Hi Pam,

      During and after the laparoscopic appendectomy, we give patients a little extra fluid….so a few days after the operation the body starts to “give it back” and get rid of the extra fluid by way of urine. So this is fairly normal. One thing to think about is that since your husband is 66 he may have some “benign prostatic hypertrophy”, or “BPH”. BPH is a fairly common benign enlargement of the prostate which manifests itself in older males by frequent urination. It’s common to see an older male have this issue after a fairly straightforward operation such as a laparoscopic appendectomy. In the end, I really would not be too concerned about the frequent urination as long as he is continuing to urinate OK and he is not developing lower abdominal pain and he becomes unable to urinate at all. I suspect it will improve over the next few days. If he doesn’t, or he suddenly becomes unable to urinate, he should see his surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you Dr. Buck. My husband was relieved when I read him your reply. He has no pain only occasional headache for which too ibuprofen. Right now all he wants to do is sleep. Will take it one day at a time and tomorrow will remove the bandages over incesions to check them out. I printed out your Post Op instructions as my guide again
        Thank you

  16. Hi!
    I had a lap appendectomy on June 8. I have been feeling completely back to normal, no pain, etc. for a couple of weeks now. 3 days ago I started
    Feeling pain around and just to the left of my belly button. It’s not a
    Bad pain, more like a dull ache. Kind of a bruised feeling. It’s tender when touched or if I try to lay ony stomach. It is worse when I cough or use the muscles in that area. I had a cold last week and was coughing a lot. Is this normal? Like maybe the nerves are just waking up in that area? Or maybe I strained too much with all of the coughing? It has been over a month now since my appendectomy. Is this something I should be concerned about? Thank you!

    • Hi Ashley,

      Most likely you stretched or strained the healing tissue in the incision deep to the skin when you had the frequent coughing. I would take it easy on activity for a 3-5 days and see if it’s improving. As long as it is improving and there is no abnormal bulge underneath the skin around the incision, then I think it’s safe to watch. After a lap appendectomy, if the incision gets too much strain, the healing tissue can come apart and you can develop a hernia, and that’s when you will see an abnormal bulge under the skin. However, it sounds like you are sore from a little strain after the coughing.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you for your help! Would the bulge be obvious?

        • And also, is a hernia serious?

          • Hi Ashley,

            Most of the time it’s pretty obvious. Hernias can be not a problem or serious. You can check out my hernia page for an explanation.

            Hernia Explanation

            -Dr. Buck

          • Thank you!

  17. Hi Dr. Buck! My 2.5 year old son had a laparoscopic appendectomy 5 days ago. he still has a lot of pain on his lower right side and he also has a rather large “pooch” just to the side of his belly button. Should we be concerned about either of these things? (He’s pooping great, and no fever)

    • Hi Renee,

      Seems to be a little far out from the surgery to be having “a lot” of pain on the lower right side still. It’s also tough to say what exactly the “pooch” is without examining him myself. I’m sorry I’m not much help for your questions! I think you would it would be best seeing his surgeon. I can’t say that he has anything serious going on…but I can’t say that he doesn’t either. This is definitely a situation which requires a physical examination.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks, Dr. Buck! He woke up this morning and the “pooch” is growing bigger and he is more uncomfortable today than a couple days ago, so we HAVE put a call in to his surgeon to see what is going on. I appreciate your help!

  18. Hi Dr Buck,

    My 10 year old daughter had her appendix removed laparoscopically May 31st 2012 (about 7 weeks ago). She was discharged the following day but ended up back in hospital 6 hours later for a further 2 days to manage the terrible referred “shoulder tip pain” following the surgery.

    At her follow up appointment with the surgeon one week later she was still naturally in quite a bit of pain. Four weeks later she was still complaining of pain in all 3 of the sites- the area above the pubic bone being the worst. She states this pain intensifies when she needs to urinate and is often woken by this “pressure” pain- sometimes screaming.

    Our GP sent her for an abdo ultrasound to rule out any fluid at the site. This came back ok.

    The surgeon on our 2nd follow states he hinks it is just healing still & to “wait and see”- then go back for a 3rd follow up at the end of July.

    On top of this about 2 weeks after the surgery she started coughing (hacking coughs- which she still does although less often and more mildly) & our GP thought that part of her lung had collapsed from shallow breathing due to all the pain she was in. She was put on to antibiotics, as I said she still coughs & now screams in (sudden) pain from pinching in her chest. That we were told, is due to the inflammation of the cartilage in her rib cage (probably from the coughing) and to take ibuprofen for this & to continue to “take it easy”.

    It’s been 7 weeks and my daughter has been suffering almost constant pain either in her chest or abdo and I am at a loss as to what to do next. I seem to get nowhere when I take her to the GP or surgeon. She’s lethargic, feels sick after eating most meals and is definitely not herself. I understand that it does take time to health- especially on the inside, but shouldn’t she be feeling better by now?

    Could the abdo pain be chronic nerve pain ? Is the chest/lung pain normal? How long before chest/ lung pain subsides?

    Sorry to ramble on, was so happy to stumble on your site & hope you may have some ideas for us. I just want her to be well again!

    Gold Coast

    • Hi Catherine,

      So sorry to hear you and your daughter are having such a tough time after the laparoscopic appendectomy surgery! Sometimes a complication can take several weeks to months to recover from. However, has she had a CT scan at any point? Does she have fevers and chills along with the coughing? Did they mention if she had a post-operative abscess or wound infection? I agree it is a long time out to continue to have this sort of pain and symptoms, however, sometimes even though it’s tough to watch as a surgeon and parent, it’s better to “wait and see” as your surgeon put it. Re-operations in these situations are generally extremely un-satisfying. By that I mean if the surgeon were to re-operate….most of the time there is nothing identified that is causing the pain, but you have still put the patient through another operation….with all of it’s risks. We often say in general surgery “If you operate for pain, you get more pain.”….because if there is nothing identifiable on physical exam, labs and CT scan that is causing the pain, you often don’t find anything inside the abdomen that is causing the pain…..and so the patient ends up with MORE pain because of the surgery. I do realize you both are very frustrated at his point, but I think this is why your surgeon is trying to wait. He doesn’t want to operate on her and find nothing…..which is a highly likely scenario. If you want to answer the questions I’ve stated above in an email to me, we can have a further discussion about what has happened and other possible investigation into her problems. Just email me: Hope this helped a little!

      -Dr. Buck

  19. Hi Dr Buck,

    I had a laparoscopy appendectomy 6 days ago, everything went ok with the surgery but after surgery I wasnt able to urinate. I had acute urinary retention and required straight catherization twice. I was released 2 days after surgery but since then I have only being able to urinate twice a day. It seems my bladder has to be extremely full before I can urinate. Im also feeling extremly tired and dizzy when standing along with rapid heart rate. Is this normal? My follow up appointment is not until the 31st. Any sugestions?????? Thanks

    • Hi Milvia,

      Although the urinary retention is common, I don’t think you should be having the symptoms this far out from the surgery. That together with being dizzy and having palpitations leads me to suggest you should see your surgeon or primary care physician as soon as you can. It may be just some dehydration but since I don’t know your medical history and can’t exam you, I would recommend you see a medical professional.

      -Dr. Buck

  20. Hello. I had a laparoscopic appendectomy Monday. I am having pain on my right shoulder and in my chest on my right side. I am also constantly short of breath. I have sleep apnea and use a cpap machine at night. It has helped in the past after surgery (gall bladder removed Feb 2012) but not helping this time. I am still waking up unable to breathe and also with a bloody nose. I felt great Tuesday during the day, even went shopping, but around 5pm I started feeling more intense pain everywhere. Are any of these things I should be concerned with right now? Thank you.

    • Hi Ashley,

      I think it was maybe a little early after your laparoscopic appendectomy for you to do that activity. I see you posted that yesterday, how are you feeling today? Have you improved yet?

      -Dr. Buck

  21. Hi,
    Just came across this website and thought I might as well post a comment. I had a laparascopic appendectomy 2 weeks ago tomorrow and I started running after 8 days. I feel fine and tonight even did my first track workout. So everything is going fine with that and my surgeon actually told me it was ok to lightly jog 3-4 days after the surgery assuming I felt ok. Anyways, my question is do you think it would be ok if I started doing lifting exercises (bench press, etc.) that very minimally use my abdominal area? I am used to lifting 3-4 times a week and I’m having a tough time not lifting at all. Just again wanted to put an emphasis that I will try and be as smart as possible to only do lifting exercises that minimally involve the abs. Thanks for any feedback.

    • Hi Marianne,

      The reason we recommend you should wait to lift weights after your laparoscopic appendectomy, is because the new healing tissue is pretty weak right now. It’s only 60% strength at 6 weeks, so you can imagine it’s pretty weak 2 weeks after the operation. Of course there are sutures holding the tissue together, but they can be broken as well with too much pressure. I always recommend waiting 4 weeks to lift anything over 15 lbs., so there is a lowest chance of a post-op hernia. You of course always can decide for yourself when the right time to start lifting is, however you will just have a higher risk of developing an abdominal hernia. That’s the best advice I can give you.

      -Dr. Buck

  22. Hello Dr. Buck. I had my on the 18th. I have a son who just turned a year old and I’ve started to pick him up as of the 25th. I read a lot online about how an appendectomy can cause scar tissue, resulting in infertility.. My question is, how can i know if it caused scar tissue? And does picking him up increase my chances of scar tissue?

    • Hi Mary,

      Anytime a patient has an operation in the abdomen some scar tissue will develop. However, there is virtually no risk that the laparoscopic appendectomy (in a non-ruptured appendix) will cause infertility. If it is a ruptured appendix, one study shows patients to be 3.2-4.8x as likely to develop tubal infertility. Picking up your son does not increase your scar tissue development. Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  23. Wooow thank u for ur post I was just surffing wondering how long I’m suppose to feel like this I just had my very 1st surgery ever July 12th & it was a Lap. Appendectomy. My surgeon has sent me bad to work already with not restrictions!!!!!!! I work health care dealing with bed bound pts. I hope I make it my 1st day back tomorrow. He feels like I’m young (31) so I bounce back like a rubber band….. Well I’ll just keep praying and hope for the best but I’m glad I read this now I know I’m not tripping these pains is part of the healing process (sigh)

  24. Dr.Buck, My grandson had a laparoscopic appendectomy on July 28th. He is scheduled to fly from Utah to Georgia on Aug 3. Do you think there is any concern with him doing this? Also he is 12 years old and is supposed to begin football practice on Aug. 6th. What would you suggest about his practice routines?

    • Hi Laura,

      Since I’m in Jackson, Wyoming (a tourist destination), I often deal with this issue after laparoscopic appendectomy. With older patients I recommend walking every hour on the flight or while traveling in the care for the first couple of weeks to prevent against blood clots in the legs. Kids have a very low risk of this and although he probably doesn’t need to do anything, I always recommend the same thing to kids as well. So if he can walk the aisle every hour that would be best. The other thing I tell my patients is to make sure they take the pain medication while traveling, even if they don’t feel they need it. If you get behind with the pain medication on a long trip, and you are in an uncomfortable place (like an airline seat), the trip can be miserable in a hurry. So prevention is the key to having a safe and relatively comfortable trip. In my opinion, I think starting football practice on Aug 6th is a little early. Everyone has their own thoughts on the best time to return to normal activity, but I usually tell my younger patients about 3-4 weeks for full activity. And sometimes they don’t feel up to it at that point……so I always tell them to increase their activity after 3-4 weeks as tolerated. If he goes to practice one day, and is wiped out the next (or has incisional pain)…that’s a pretty good sign he’s not ready yet.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you very much for your advice. He made it home without any problems and was just a little tired. We will try the football practice a little at a time and see how it goes like you suggested. Also, since he had the surgery in Idaho, do we need to follow up with a surgeon here? Laura

  25. Dr. Buck, If you could also let us know when my grandson can swim that will be helpful ! Thank you! Laura

    • Hi Laura,

      I like a nice round number like 2 weeks for swimming….again, this is my opinion and not all surgeons agree (many say 7-10 days), so keep that in mind.

      -Dr. Buck

  26. Dr Buck, I had a laparoscopic appendectomy on 16 July, (2 weeks ago). Initially I felt fine, however started getting low grade fever on day 4 which is still ongoing. (37.7 to 38.3 Celsius). I went back to the gp, we have done blood tests and an ultrasound which came back all normal. I went back to the gp yesterday and they are not sure what is going on. No urine infection, however I started getting some pain at the lower end of my abdomen, sharp pain not long lasting. I also started working yesterday and driving. Any ideas around the low grade fever and the sharp pain? My gp have suggested another round of blood tests and if all clear he suggested we wait till next week to see if the low grade fever will disappear.
    Thank you

    • Hi Annette,

      I would do a CT Scan to rule out a small abscess (localized abdominal infection). Any diarrhea?

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you for your comment, I really appreciate it. No diarrhea at all, normal stools. The GP phoned this morning confirming second blood and urine tests are normal. I will definitely ask the GP to do a CT scan if not better by early next week.

  27. i had laparoscopy appendectomy 2 weeks ago and im having pain and burning sesation on my lower abdomen wound . should i go back to the doctor

    • Hi Suga,

      Is the pain all the time? Or sometimes? Any other symptoms? Fevers, chills, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea? Any redness around the incision? Is it painful to touch?

      -Dr. Buck

  28. Hi Dr. Buck,
    I wrote a comment a few days ago about running and I just had one more question. So I’ve been back to running for about a week now and I’m feeling fine. I have been sore though because I took ten days off of running and getting back into it my legs have been sore. I was thinking of getting a sports massage on my legs to help with the soreness and was just wondering what you thought. Like I said its been 2 and 1/2 weeks since my laparascopic appendectomy so the massage would only be on my legs but I’m just writing because sports massages tend to be painful and sometimes you clench your ab muscles when they massages since they try to work out the knots. Thanks again for any feedback I appreciate it.

  29. First, this is a great site. I, like many of the posters here, am having issues that aren’t exactly emergencies, but they are bothering me. It’s cool to have some professional advice at your fingertips.

    I had a lap about one month ago — 4wks and 3 days. About 1 week ago, I was going stir crazy from not exercising, and I stupidly joined my wife in doing some light yoga. One pose really caused me some pain, and I stopped right away. It involved stretching my abdomen — laying flat face down then arching the back and pushing the shoulders up. I know, stupid, but my surgeon said to avoid weights over 10 lbs for 2 weeks, and then do whatever. Great advice!

    The day afterward (last Thursday) I had some general stomach pain, more like a stomach ache than anything else. It’s been present ever since, varying in degree somewhat. I experienced some loss of appetite late last week, but I have no fever or chills, and I am eating pretty normally. No problems with going to the bathroom or passing gas.

    From reading the forum, it sounds like I may have injured the underlying tissue? I appreciate any advice or opinions, as well as suggestions for what I might be able to do to mitigate the pain.

    I called my surgeon, but he was out of the office and won’t return for a week. His nurse said “you shouldn’t be doing anything at all for 6 weeks.” -_-

    • Hi Matt,

      Glad you like the website!

      I think you are probably right. Most likely you had a strain on the umbilical incision tissue. As long as you don’t have a large bulge there, I think you are OK. If you take it easy with the activity for a few days the pain will most likely subside. If it doesn’t improve with a few days of rest, you should probably see someone. I would recommend some ibuprofen as needed for pain. I’m not exactly sure what the laws are about recommending a dose for a patient I have not examined, but it’s an over the counter medication so you should be able to find it on the bottle. I usually tell people to take it easy for 4-6 weeks depending on their age and general health condition….but I know many other surgeons recommend 2 weeks….so it’s not exactly uncommon or strange practice to recommend that.

      -Dr. Buck

  30. Hi Dr Buck,

    Firstly, thank you for providing this information to general concerned patients- its above and beyond the call of duty and it’s great to see here.

    I had a lap appendectomy for suspected appendicitis on Friday 3rd August. My appendix was not obviously inflamed but there was a large amount of free fluid in my abdomen do they believe I had an ovarian cyst accident, but removed the appendix anyway.

    I know it’s only early days yet, but I am still having intense abdo pain, worse when I move, cough, try to burp or pass gas. It doesn’t feel like the pain has improved at all and I am taking large amounts of ocycodone which isn’t great.

    My stomach is bloated to the size of late pregnancy and I am exceptionally uncomfortable. No fever present, im just wondering when I should expect some degree of improvement, or to seek further medical advice if I’m not improving. Thank you.

    • Hi Amanda,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you so late but I was on vacation last week. Well hopefully you have either improved since posting, or you have gone to see your physician. Let me know either way. Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  31. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I had a lap appendectomy Sunday. While I am sure my surgeon is very good, I believe english is a second language for him. There were virtually no post op instructions. Thank you for your website, it has provided me the answers that I need. About the only post op instructions he gave was no Colace, use a fleet enema. What would be the reason/indication for that?

    • Hi Brian,

      Some surgeons don’t like to disturb the bowels too much after a laparoscopic appendectomy. Colace causes increase in bowel stool, which in theory if given before the bowels “wake up”, could cause a break in the suture or staples used to seal the bowel when removing the appendix.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  32. Dr. buck, thanks for the good information. I am a 51 y. o. female, 7 days post op from lap appendectomy which was unexpected, in addiction to removal of 3 cysts (2 ovarian and one tubal) and one Fallopian tube. Incisions are healing well, still a little constipation, and mild pain. I am able to walk about 1/2 a block slowly, but then pain in lower middle and lower right and fatigue set in. Same if I stand in place more than 10 minutes by sink. Also, I want to nap short naps at least twice a day. ( only on 200mg Advil every 6 hrs. Per md. Is it normal to feel this fatigued still? Also, I’ve benn told not to drive for another few days, but can I ride in a car safely? Thanks! Sue

    • Hi Sue,

      It is normal to feel fatigued a couple weeks out from your laparoscopic appendectomy. Hopefully you are improving slowly week by week. I always tell my patients to pick one day in the week and compare it to the following week the same day. If you are improving you are on the right track, if not, you should seek medical attention.

      Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  33. My wife had laproscopic appendix surgery 3 weeks ago. Things were progressing nicely, starting to get energy and appetite back. She is having one bowel movement a day. The concern is pain and stiffness in the exact same area she had before surgery. Her appendix ruptured and her body formed an abscess that looked like a bulge near her spleen. This was prior to surgery.. Now she is having that same pain and bulge again although it is smaller but in same area. Any thoughts?

    • Hi Heath,

      It’s tough to tell exactly what is going on. She may have an abscess after the laparoscopic appendectomy, or she could just have a lot of swelling in that area that is taking a long time to improve. Both are possible scenarios. I think if she is feeling generally well (like no fevers, chills, nausea or vomiting) then you can give it some time. If she is not feeling well, then I would return to your physician.

      -Dr. Buck

  34. Hi Dr. Buck,
    I would be really grateful if you could give me your medical opinion on the following situation. I am on holidays abroad (2 hour flight from home country). A family member of mine underwent an appendectomy this morning, she was violently sick post op due to the effects of the anaesthetic but after a few hours sleep this afternoon she started to feel much better. We are due to fly early thursday morning as of yet the doctors have not said if flying home is possible on this day. I am very anxious as a family wedding in which some of us are part of bridal party is on fridayso we need to be home for this but if course only if the doctors think she is ok to fly home. I just wanted to know if you think there is any possibility they will allow her to fly home or if this is highly unlikely so soon after op? Thanks, Amanda

    • Hi Amanda,

      It’s possible for your family member to go on the flight when you have it scheduled. It all depends on how they are feeling. I have had patients get on a flight back home 48 hours after their laparoscopic appendectomy. However, it’s important to go by how the patient is feeling. Some people are nauseous 2 days out, or they have too much pain, etc. If something like this is going on, I recommend she stays put until she is feeling up to the trip. Sorry there is no hard and fast rule about that!

      -Dr. Buck

  35. Hi Dr. Buck,

    My daughter is in London for a study abroad program and ended up in the hospital yesterday. Today she is having lap appendectomy. Assuming all will go well post-op, how soon is it safe to fly (8hr.) after this kind of surgery?

    • Hi Lorin,

      An 8 hour flight is pretty long. As I’ve said before, you have to be sure the patient is doing very well, and they are up for the trip. Everyone responds to the operation a little different, but I would say in general if she is doing well, about 1 week would be good.

      -Dr. Buck

  36. I had laproscopic appendectomy on July 16th. I began some light exercise last week and increased my workout to light weights yesterday with some walking on the treadmill. About 5 hours post workout, I started to have chills and body aches. I took tylenol and motrin and went to bed. I woke up feeling better. Can you help explain what may have happened?


    • Hi Ron,

      I’m really not sure what happened. It could be that you had a small pocket of bacteria left in the abdomen that was stirred up when you started working out. Any small new introduction of bacteria could cause transient fevers and chills. However, you could have just had a new virus not related. Sorry….I’m not sure I can be much of help with this one!

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  37. Had a lap app April 21st 2012. I contracted some kind of flu bug virus the week I was home recovering. So there was lots of coughing for at least a week. I was in incredible amounts of pain one month & then two months post op. Went in for a MRI and the surgeon and my primary dr. both looked at the Cat Scan and saw “nothing.” I was told to take Aleve for the swelling and pain. Here I am at almost four months later and still have sharp shooting pains across my abdomen and in my bellybutton at the incision site. No fever no bowel issues just swelling of my abdomen and sharp stabbing pains. I cannot walk for a block or do any kind of stairs without my incision and abdomen pain. I was told that scar tissue would not show in a Cat Scan but would in an MRI. Do I go back to my primary and demand an MRI?

    • Hi Joana,

      I’m not sure what exactly is going on, but has your doctor tried to inject lidocaine (local anesthetic) into and around the navel? This can help sort out if there is something in the navel incision that is causing your pain, or something deeper. Typically this is a very hard problem to sort out. I doubt an MRI would be helpful unfortunately.

      -Dr. Buck

  38. I have just come across this site reading up on this appendectomy operation, I had this procedure done on July 9th, and went back to work as a store clerk 2 weeks later, light duty!! , I was wondering if i can go back to lifting and how much now that it has been just about 6 weeks, i am healthy and active (farm girl), and I would like to resume some of my duties. Thanks for now.

    • Hi Adrienne,

      I typically tell my patients they can return to full duty without restrictions at 6 weeks post appendectomy.

      Take care!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you for your time. Very good to read all the comments.

  39. Hi Dr.Buck,
    I am 24 male well built, 5 ft 10 and 76 kgs. I underwent laproscopic appendectomy on 3 of August and i had followed all procedures correctly and never lifted any weights or did exercise, my bowels started to move normally after 2 days of surgery and got my stitches removed after a week of surgery and i resumed with normal diet. Suddenly from yesterday i am experiencing muscle pulls in lower abs and i am constipated !! did i acquire hernia ?? or is it due to my lack of walking exercise ??
    Regards Abinanth..

    • Hi Abinanth,

      It’s tough to tell what is going on without examining you. It may be just that its a bit early and you are experiencing normal pains after increasing your activity. Even if you are not working out, normal daily activity can cause these symptoms. I would make sure your stool is soft as the pain could be from the colon and not your incisions. I recommend Milk of Magnesia 30 ml in the morning and night to my patients who need a stool softener. Once that pain is gone, you can start to do light exercise, but I would stay away from the sit-ups until the 4 week mark.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks a lot Dr Buck for spending your precious time, your advice seems to be very helpful !! :)..
        With regards and respects

      • I had my Lap appendectomy 22 days ago everything is good I’ve returned to normal activities except swimming when can I go swimming my doctor said I can do anything I want as long as I don’t have pain but he didn’t say anything about swimming any advice??

        • Yes, by now you can go swimming.

          -Dr. Buck

  40. Dr Buck,
    I have another doubt, i really do heavy weights so it has been already like 3 weeks after my surgery, so can i atleast can i start with push ups, pulls ups, situps and walking ?? or shall i wait for one more week ?? would be very helpful and grateful if i could get answers for my 2 question. Thanks a lot !!
    With regards

  41. Hi Dr.Buck,
    My previous comments are not getting posted dont know why!!, I am 24 male 5ft10 and 76kgs and in good shape and into heavy weights, i underwent laproscopic appendectomy on 3rd of August. i followed all post operative instructions, took the medicines rite and never did any exercises for the past 2 weeks or so, and my bowel movements were fine after 2 days of surgery and i resumed to normal diet, but suddenly from yesterday i am experiencing muscle pulls in right lower abs and experiencing constipation!! will it be Hernia ?? or lack of walking exercise?? and one more doubt is from next week shall i start doing pushups,pullups and situps or wait for one more week ??
    Thanks a lot Dr
    Yours Sincerely

  42. hey doc–

    had a lap app at the end of july. i had some rough weeks, but doing generally ok now. i notice a pretty hard bump at my belly button now though. it’s been changing shape as it heals, and i just noticed this thing sticking out. is it possible it’s a staple poking out? is this normal?


    • *end of june

  43. Dr. Buck,

    I had a lap app on July 5. When I had my follow up appointment, 5 days after surgery, I complained of numbness in my stomach. The doctor seemed puzzled and said sometimes nerves are cut, but that it should fix itself. Now that I am over 6 weeks post surgery I’m getting concerned that it should not feel this way. Is this normal? Will I ever get the feeling back if it is a nerve?

    • Hi Alissa,

      If you mean the skin on your stomach where around where your laparoscopic appendectomy incisions were, then yes that does happen. I’m not surprised it’s not back yet. Peripheral nerves grow back at rate of about 1 inch per month….so depending on how much skin you have numb, it can be months to a year before it’s back. Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  44. Dr. Buck,
    My 16 y/o son had a lap appendectomy on Aug 8. His bellybutton site “popped” about a week later with pus and blood. He was seen by the surgeon on Aug 16 in follow up where he re-opened the site to check if there was more drainage. Surgeon tried to reassure us that it was normal discharge and site was not infected. The site is not red but my son does have a low grade fever (100.8). We continue to cover bellybutton and it is still oozing some clear fluid. Biggest complaint from my son is an overall feeling of fatigue and now is having discharge (clear mucus like) from his bowels several times a day. He is very uncomfortable. Should I head to his regular physician or are these “normal” problems that you’ve seen before.

    • Hi Stacy,

      It sounds like the incision was infected at one point. Since it opened and the surgeon then re-opened it I think it’s probably OK if the incision is still open. When incisions are open, it is normal for them to drain a clear fluid. If he is having diarrhea and a low grade fever, I would be more concerned about an infection in his bowels that sometimes happens after a dose of antibiotics. It’s called “Clostridium Difficile” or “C-Diff”. Although if he has not been taking antibiotics since his surgery (everyone gets at least one dose before the surgery, and depending on the situation it could be extended to a week post-operatively), I can’t say it fits the scenario perfectly. However, C-Diff is enough of a problem that I would recommend you at least see your primary care physician for this.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  45. Thanks for your quick response. I took my son to the Dr. the next morning and he sent us back to the hospital where my son was re-admitted. They found a large abscess in his pelvic region and it is now being drained. Lots of antibiotics, etc. but we’re hoping we’re moving in the right direction. I appreciated your opinion very much.

    • Glad I could help. Sounds like you are headed in the right direction! Take care.

      -Dr. Buck

  46. Dr. Buck,

    Thanks for answering our questions! I’m 34 and I had lap app 6 days ago, and I’m trying to walk a little more each day. About twice a day I get short fits of stabbing pain to the right of my belly button, usually after sitting. I’ve hardly been in the car because of this. Does this sound like something to worry about? Thanks!

    • Hi Andrew,

      Sound like you are just pushing maybe a little too hard at first. Give it a few days and I think it will probably resolve on it’s own.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  47. Dr. Buck,
    I had lap app two weeks ago. I had been feeling well. I had been passing gas and having 2-3 loose bowl movements a day. However, today I had a sandwich with lots of veggies at 10:00 am. I then starated to feel out of breath. I also have mild pain on my upper chest. I have had 6 loose bowl movements today. Could it just be gas? Should I be conserned? I don’t have any stomach pain at all. However, the shortness of breath seems to go and come since 10:00 am till now which is about 4:14 pm. Thanks in advance for your help.

    • Hi Sonia,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you late….but the shortness of breath concerns me. I think you should see a physician as soon as possible. I’m concerned you may have a DVT (Deep Venous Thrombosis) leading to a PE (Pulmonary Embolism). It’s possible it’s something else, but with symptoms such as this I think it best to see someone right away.

      -Dr. Buck

  48. I had a lap app on 8/14/2012. I was doing ok and though I was healing. However for about 2 days now, I have pain on my right side sort of where the whole issue began in the first place. It’s just pain when I sit or bend down. Feels like something is pulling on my inside. Should I be worried? It’s almost been two weeks, I thought I would feel much better by now. Thanks.

    • Hi Silvia,

      It may be some of the scaring that happens after surgery on the inside is pulling a bit. I think this will probably resolve with time. It’s also possible there is an infection in that area (although 2 weeks is a little far out to be just experiencing the pain now). If you have fevers, chills and increasing pain, then I would see a physician about it.

      -Dr. Buck

  49. Hello, I had my appendix removed last week via a laparoscopic appendectomy. I’ve had some moderate fatigue since Wednesday and I still have it. How long does post-surgery fatigue tend to last and at what point should I start to be concerned?

    Also, I should note that I do take a medication for ADD (50mg Metadate every morning). I’m not sure if that could affect anything but I want to be on the safe side.

    • Hi Tom,

      Fatigue can last a couple of weeks to a month. I tell my laparoscopic appendectomy patients that if they are improving from week to week (pick a day and compare it to last week same day), then they are probably on the right track. If it’s getting worse….then you should probably see someone about it.

      -Dr. Buck

  50. Hi! I had a lap appendectomy on august 28. They sent me home the same day. I noticed that day that i had a popping sensation in my chest and figured it was the air they put in. I went back 2 days later with sharp pain under my ribs on the right side. It would hurt more when i would try to breathe deep and i had also click een coughing up flem. They did a ct scan to rule out a blood clot and there was not one. I was happy about that! The doctor said that the bottom part of my right lung looked hazy and sent me home with one of those breathing exercise machines where i have to breathe in air to move the plastic to a certain level. The pain isnt as bad when im just laying now but it starts hurting worse when i try to get up. I have a seven week old daughter and i hate having my husband have to do a lot of the stuff i usually do. I am just wondering if this pain is normal or if i should have it checked again. I am breastfeeding and had to stop for a while after the ct scan and would like to avoid having to have another. People keep telling me to have my gall bladder checked but i thought they would have seen that from either the ct scan they did before they took out my appendix or the one they did thursday to check for a blood clot. Thank you for your time i appreciate it!

    • Hi Holly,

      I think there are a few possibilities, but without examining you, it’s pretty tough to sort out. But I think it’s possible it is the lungs like your doctor said, or left over air from the surgery which can irritate the diaphragm on the right, or your gallbladder. I think it’s less likely your gallbladder since you had a couple of CT scans…however the best test for gallbladder problems is the Ultrasound and not the CT. Also, usually the gallbladder pain is increased after eating. I think if you are improving over the last 48 hours you should give it some time…but if you haven’t, you should see your physician. Sorry I’m not much help with this one.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you very much!

  51. Hey, I had my appendix removed 4 days ago, I’m home everything is fine, going to the bathroom well, my only problem is when I go to pee its like a weak stream, is this normal, any input would be great. Thank you in advance for the kind service you offer.

    • Hi Anthony,

      I’m not sure of your age, but older men do have bladder problems after surgery which is common. If it improves over the next 3-4 days I think it was most likely from the anesthesia…..but if it doesn’t you should see your physician.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you for the advice, I’m 16 and this is my first surgery so this is all new to me, thanks again for your help doc

  52. I had lap appendectomy Sun midnight. AGE 75. History of constipation altho i drink a lot of fluids & eat 8 servings fruit/veggies. Since surgery,4days ago, lot of gas but no b m even tho taking senna s & colace. Is this normal? No real pain, just uncomfortable. Is it time for dulcolax or milk of mag?

    • Hi Doris,

      This is pretty common after any abdominal surgery. I usually recommend milk of magnesia and senokot each twice daily until regular function returns. Hope you are feeling better by now.


  53. Hi, I had a laporscopic appendectomy on August 26, it’s almost been two weeks. Every time I eat I feel like I’m either experiencing heartburn or a feeling of gas in my stomach/chest. I had my post op appt this past Tuesday and mentioned it to the surgeon who said it could be from the Ibuprofen, so I stopped taking it 2 days ago and still have the same feeling even after just eating a banana and an english muffin. I also tried taking prilosec which didn’t help at all. I’m thinking it’s not heartburn and I’m just confusing the feelings. Today I’m experiencing diarrhea and haven’t had anything to eat yet. Should I be concerned or should I wait another day to see how I feel?


    • Hi Kris,

      Sorry you are feeling bad and I haven’t gotten back to you until now! It’s not something connolly seen after an appendix surgery so I think the best thing to do in this case is to either return to your surgeon or family doctor. This way at least they can start figuring out what is going on and provide some temporary relief until you figure out the disgnosis.

      -Dr. Buck

  54. Hi, my 15 yr old daughter had a lap appendectomy 5 days ago and had slight fever, 99-100 the first 2 days. She is fatigued and sore but improving. Then the fever came back last night – 100.5 but is coming and going. Is it normal for a low fever to continue 5 days after? Everything else appears normal.
    Thank you!!

    • Hi Leanne,

      I think you should contact your doctor or surgeon. She could have a post-op absces that is starting to develop. It could be atelectasis (small collapse of the lung that is common after surgery) or a few other things. A fever at this point is not normal so it’s bet to see someone.

  55. Dr.Buck,
    My husband had a lap appendectomy yesterday morning and was released last night. In the hospital everything was great – he felt fine, but when we got home he started running a fever, which he is still having of 37.5C to 38.8C. He doesn’t have any severe pains, no vomiting, no dizziness, no nausea, but he does have diarrhea and complained of sore throat in the morning. There doesn’t seem to be any visible infection around the incisions, just the redness around the belly button incision. I am just not sure if I should panic just yet.
    Thank you in advance for your help.

    • Hi Inga,

      Sometimes people develop atelectasis after the surgery (small collapse if the alveoli in the lungs which cause fever). However 38.8 is pretty high so I think it’s best you should contact the surgeon. If he is concerned (sometimes during the operation a surgeon will have a sense there is a higher risk for complications) he may have you do more tests. He may also have your husband take deep breaths for 24 hours and see if it resolves, either way it’s prudent to talk to him.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you very much, we went to the doctor today and it turned out to be a throat infection, so he got antibiotics. If it wasn’t for you my husband wouldn’t have gone to the doctor – he kept telling me that he is OK and all is normal and no need to see a doctor. Thanks again.

  56. Hello! Thank you for your feedback and insight here. Very helpful.
    I had my appendix removed 8 weeks ago, with another minor surgery when the surgeon found that my omentum had attached to my fallopian tube. The surgeon detached that, and took my appendix out. I have returned to full activity, and am an avid cyclist and runner (150+miles / week on the bike, TRX, trail running) and have returned (3 weeks ago) to my fairly-normal exercise routine. I have been noticing pangs of pain, prolonged aches and bloating lately on my right side where the surgery took place. Did I possibly tear the healing muscles? If I continue to exercise my “usual”, will the healing take longer? And although I can stand the pain, am I hurting myself – ie internal bleeding or inflammation that could cause other problems?
    Thank you for your help!
    N. J. D.

    • Hi June,

      If you are having pain on the right side and you had a laparoscopic appendectomy with no incisions on the right, I think you are probably OK. If you had an open appende tommy with the incision in the right side you may have torn the incision slightly so you should see your doctor. It’s unlikely you are doing any internal damage to cause bleeding. It may take a wile for your bowels to return to normal function, and this may be the cause of your swelling as well. I think it would be a good idea to check in with your doctor either way to put your mind at ease since your are such an active athlete.

      -Dr. Buck

  57. Dr Buck,
    First thank you so much for all the advice on this site. I had a lap appendectomy 3.5 weeks ago. I was doing great last night I had sex and now have pain in the lower right quadrant. It feels sore and only hurts when I move around. Should I be worried or any symptoms I should watch for? Thanks in advance!

    • Hi Amanda,

      It may be pain from higher level activity (if you have not done much other heavy activity). Give it 24-48 hrs to see if it improves. Symptoms to look out for would be increasing abdominal pain, fevers, chills and bloating. If you develope these you should see a physician.

      -Dr. Buck

  58. Hi Dr my daughter is 36 hours postop lap appie and spiked 103 temp she is still in the hospital and c/o abd bloating I know this is normal but the temp has me worried can she get an ilieus from this surgery or is it more likely she has post op infection?

    • Hi Brenda,

      It’s a little early to tell what’s going on, especially since I have limited information, but it’s common for patients to have fevers within the first 48 hours after surgery. Although the 103 is high, it doesn’t mean it. Must be an infection. After the 48 hours, then I would be concerned for infection.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks she is doing a little better we have her up and walking every couple of hrs her WBC’s were 9.3 when her temp spiked to 103 today its down to 100.6

  59. My 13-year-old daughter had a laparoscopic appendectomy July 2, 2012, and took it easy for the first month after surgery. She went swimming and tubing in August, and has been walking, but has not jogged or been running since the surgery. In PE class today, she had to do a 1-mile run, and started feeling sharp pain (lower right abdomen) before she was at 1/2 mile, and it intensified after she stopped running. The pain was severe, but has lessened over the past hour or so (3 hrs since onset–now said it feels “sore”). When I called doctor office, I was told that the pain could be from “re-routed nerves” and that it might take some time for them to “figure out where to go” — at 10 weeks out, could she have stressed the healing tissue enough to cause the pain, or could it be the “re-routed nerves?” Is there anything she can do, to prevent experiencing intense pain where appendix was removed every time she has to jog or run?

    • Hi Sharon,

      I’m not sure about the nerve issue, but my guess is that she pulled some tissue that is fairly weak right now. Although I’m not sure about the intensity (sounds like she was in a lot of pain) but it is normal to have some pain after surgery when you start increasing activity. It may be that she had not done much until now, and this is the first rigorous activity she has done and she just “over-did it” a little. I think it’s OK to give her around 24 hours to see if she is improving in regards to her pain. I think she will. She should just ease into activity from now and incrementally increase the activity until she’s back to full activity. If she develops increasing pain, fevers or chills over the next 24 hours you should have her see a physician right away. Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  60. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I wish I would have found this thread of wonderful information before and just after my lap app. I am 35 and had my surgery 5 days ago. I have been experiencing a heavy burning sensation under the skin, about 2 inches to the left of my bellybutton incision. It worsens when I walk or stand. I am not quite sure if this is normal or if I should have it checked out. Also, my left inner thigh has some slight pain that comes and goes. Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you soon!

    • Hi Sarah,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you so late! I think the belly button pain will go away. It’s probably just a pulling sensation from the sutures that are normally placed in the deep tissue of the belly button. If it doesn’t subside in 48-72 hours you should visit your surgeon. I’m not quite sure what to make of your inner thigh pain honestly. It could be from positioning during the surgery I suppose. I think the same about the belly button pain, if it doesn’t improve within 48-72 hours, you should see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  61. Hi Dr. Buck,
    I had Lap Appendectomy surgery on Sep 6th. The recovering is going well except I have been having extreme back pain ever since…it’s so painful I can’t stand. Is related to the surgery..? Should I be concerned this will be long-term?

    • Hi Cheryl,

      So sorry to hear you are having so much pain! I’m not sure why you are having this but I think you should see your surgeon right away. Sometimes the positioning from the surgery could be the problem. If you had a pre-existing back condition, this could have flared it up, or you could have had a problem that was revealed by the positioning during the operation. Either way, you should see your doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

  62. Dr. Buck,
    I had a Laparoscopic Appendectomy about 7 weeks ago. I’ve been feeling much better may have overdone it with an intense kettleball yoga workout where i lifted weights (up to 20llbs) about 5 days ago. Since then I’ve had pain in the lower right abdominal area that is getting worse each day. Could I have a tear ? What should I do ?
    Thanks !

    • Hi Lisa,

      I’m not sure what you did, but it seems it should be improving over the 5 days instead of getting worse. If you are having fevers, chills and increasing abdominal pain after a laparoscopic appendectomy you should see your surgeon right away. If it’s just abdominal pain, it’s possible you tore some scar tissue inside, but not necessarily the actually bowel. Since it has been getting worse over the last 5 days, I think the prudent thing to do is to see your doctor.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  63. Dr.Buck

    I had a laparscopic appendectomy Sept. 13. Incisions look good, I’m eating well and bowels are fine. Over all I feel pretty good, However there’s a dull pain (almost like a pulled muscle type of pain) about an inch or two above my hip bone, its pretty consistent. Is that normal? Also, when would you recommend couples can return to normal physical activities 😉 Thanks.


    • Hi Karin,

      I think it is still pretty close to your operation to be too concerned about that sort of pain if it is not increasing. I think a week is good to get back to “normal” physical activities:)

      -Dr. Buck

  64. G. morning doctor. My sister, 30 yrs old, had open surgical appendicectomy 6 days ago. She started urination after 7 hrs approx of operation. She sometimes passes out gas through anus. But she has not defaecation (I mean she could not throw stool) till now. It’s 6 days running. Plz. suggest us what should we do?

    • Hi Tika,

      Usually I recommend to my patients senokot twice daily and milk of magnesia twice daily.

      -Dr. Buck

  65. Dr. Buck
    I had a lap appendectomy Sept 10. I stayed off of work until Sept 20 (I am an elementary special education teacher). Surgery and recovery has been uneventful so far. I am a runner and sand volleyball player, so definitely in shape. I have only done some short (1.5 to 2.5 mile) walks so far. After returning to work, my abdomen appears swollen compared to before going back to work. Is this normal? What can I do to alleviate the swelling? I tried ice and ibuprofen yesterday and it was still swollen in appearance this morning. I have also gained 1.5ish pounds since going back, which I assume is swelling. No fever, no pain, no problems, just seem swollen. What should I do?

    • Hi Hope,

      It is common to have a bit of a swollen abdomen after a laparoscopic appendectomy. It sounds lik you are doing well, but the abdomen is not quite back to normal yet. I think it will most likely return to normal in a few weeks. It just takes time:)

      -Dr. Buck

  66. Hello Dr.Buck
    On August 5th I’ve had a lapparascopc appendix surgery and when they was inside my stomach they also removed the Meckel’s diverticulum and they also did a resection of the small bowel…ive been recovering very well with no nosea no vomiting no fever ….until 2 days ago i start feeling pain in my lower abdomen same as the pain i was feeling before the operation.when i touch my “appendix”area i feel pain as if my appendix is still there….when i try to go to #2 i feel VERY strong pain ..i havent been for #2 in 2 days….when i walk i feel alittle bit of pain.Please Dr.Buck tell me what could be the problem.I got the approval from the surgeon to sart working with no restrictions bcoz its been more then month and a half…..
    I’m very scared
    I’m sorry for my English as its not my first language.
    Thank you Dr.Buck
    P.S.i’m a 28 yr old male with no medical history

    • Hi Trajce,

      I’m afraid I’m not going to be able to tell you exactly what’s going on with you having severe pain and not being able to examine you. I do think you should see a physician as soon as possible if you are having severe pain. Sorry I can’t help much!

      -Dr. Buck

  67. Hi. I am 2 weeks post laproscopic appendectomy. I feel fine except for noticing a hardened area under the incision at my bikini line, it feels like a little knot or nodule, it is just slightly tender, not painful, no other symptoms but feels weird, should I be concerned? Could it be a hernia? Scar tissue? Also, I am back to work, physical therapist, other than avoid heavy lifting is there anything else I shouldn’t do?

    • Hi Heather,

      Sounds like it may be a stitch that is trying to reach the surface. It could be a couple of things. Sometimes the scar tissue makes a hard knot under the skin….this is normal and there is not much to do about it. Also, sometimes our body tries to “spit the suture out”…as some people call it. Its common enough that we know if you just give it some time, it will come out. If it gets to the point where you can see a suture popping out of the skin then you can see your physician and he/she can remove it. It sounds like otherwise you are on the right track.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks. I was told my sutures underneath were the kind that dissolve and then I was glued on the outside so in this case is it still possible for it to be a stitch? And at 2 weeks post op? Also is it safe to use mederma at this stage? Thanks again

        • Yes, those sutures don’t dissolve until about 6 weeks….so it’s still possible that its the stitch that is causing the problem. Mederma is fine.

  68. Dr. Buck
    I just had emergency appendectomy last Thursday night. I feel so much better but the only problem I am having is occasional fevers, chills, and weakness,. Also, my main concern is the fact that on my lower left side near one of my incisions I am experiencing a burning, pulling, and throbbing pain. I hurts when i take a deep breath, laugh, cough, sit up, or even bend over or turn a certain way. I was wondering if this is something I should be worried about. I called the doctor on call two days ago and he said that I shouldn’t have anything to worry about, if i did pull a stitch that it was ok. I was just wondering what this pain could possible be and when it will go away.

    Thank you for you time

    • Hi Hillary,

      I think you are having some normal post-operative pain at this point. You should improve over the next 48-72 hours or so (I see your wrote this on 9/27). If you haven’t started feeling better by then and the fevers & chills have not subsided, you should see your physician right away. It’s possible to have a wound infection which is causing this. However, the left lower incision is at a lower risk than the others for infection, so although not totally impossible, it seems unlikely. It’s possible you did pull a stich as well… which case it may possibly heal OK with time and rest.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  69. hi dr. I am 22 years old; i have appendectomy lap. Since 45 days; the doctor told me that my appendix was at the posterior part of the abdominal wall ;near the kidney; and this explain the pain at right lower part of my back before two days of the surgery
    one week ago i have pain in the same area in my back until now and it does not respond to pain killer; and my belly button still hurt me when pressure
    What is happening?
    Thank you

    • Hi Judy,

      It could be you are having a post-operative infection after the surgery. I would see your physician as soon as possible.

      -Dr. Buck

  70. Love your site Dr Buck and would be extremely grateful for a response. I had a lap appendectomy due to rupture approximately 1 week ago. I was finally starting to feel better and had a normal but slightly fatty dinner yesterday. Immediately afterward, I began experiencing right lower quadrant pain, shoulder blade pain, and shortness breath (some of the same symptoms I had prior to surgery). Pepcid did nothing. Today I have eaten healthy and in much smaller quantity but still have the shortness of breath and shoulder blade discomfort (most of the right lower quadrant pain has subsided). My question, Is this pain due to the meal normal or should I be concerned about my gallbladder or something else?Thanks so much for your time and I look forward to your response.

    • Hi Robert,

      The right shoulder pain could be related to the gallbladder. If you are having fevers & chills…the pain could be from an abscess since you had a ruptured appendix. Shortness of breath is always a concern after surgery due to the possibility of DVT and or PE (pulmonary embolism). I think either way you should talk to your surgeon about your pain and shortness of breath.

      • Good afternoon Dr Buck,

        Just thought I’d drop in and give an update. It turns out the shoulder blade pain, right sided pain, and pain on respiration were due to my gallbladder. I went in for an ultrasound two days after my post and then checked into the hospital later that same afternoon. Unfortunately, I had to undergo an immediate 2nd surgery but am grateful that part is over.
        Hopefully, now I am on to a speedy and uneventful recovery. Still have some trapezius and mid thoracic pain on respiration but am hopeful it is normal and will go away in the next few days. Just wanted to thank you for your efforts in responding to all these posts. It is greatly appreciated.

        • Wow! Sorry to hear you needed another operation….but glad to hear you got it all taken care of now. Hope your recovery is speedy.

          -Dr. Buck

  71. Hello Dr. Buck,

    This summer i had a ruptured appendix for 3 weeks before I was diagnosed. I thought it was just an intestinal irritation or pulled muscle until I started to get fevers. My doctor said the infection was walled off and he put on 2 powerful antibiotics, saying he would cause more harm than good if he operated. After two ten day regimens of the medication the CT scan should that the infection was cleared up and there was some scar tissue on the appendix.

    Three weeks ago I was away on vacation and felt the same pain in my side again.
    I called my doctor and he prescribed another 10 dose of antibiotics for me. The pain then subsided so I never took the meds and have been fine. I am going overseas in a week and last night I got a more severe pain in my right side. This morning it lessened but not as much. I want to take the meds now that I have and travel. Good thing is that my daughter overseas knows of an excellent surgeon who could perform an appendectomy there.

    My question is, how soon could I fly home after the surgery? I believe taking the meds for the ten days would help to have an uncomplicated lap app or conventional app.


    • Hi Phil,

      I often have patients who have a laparoscopic appendectomy and fly home within about 3 days. It all depends on how your surgery goes, and how you recover after the surgery. Your surgery may be longer due to the scar tissue, so don’t be too surprised if it takes a bit longer to recover than most people.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hi Dr. Buck,

        I ended up going to see my daughter in Romania with my appendicitis. A friend of hers got in touch with a surgeon there he said he could perform the surgery. It ended up that he is the director of surgery and head surgeon of a new private hospital in Brasov, Romania.

        He examined me and said that a lap app would work. My wife told him I had a gall bladder attack 7 years ago with a stuck stone. Miraculously the stone was passed but not without consequences. My blood work went all out of balance and my bilirubin was off the charts and I developed jaundice. Slowly all levels came back and an ultrasound declared I was stone free!

        To sum it all up the surgeon performed an appendectomy and a gall bladder removal in one session. He used a new portal system which I only needed one incision. He used the old incision I had for an umbilical hernia. It has been three weeks now and I am feeling great. I decided to stay an extra week in Romania to enjoy my daughter and the picturesque mountain city of Brasov!

        One more thing, the whole medical experience (exams, cardiology, CT Scan, blood work, chest ex-ray, 3 day 2night stay in the hospital, surgery, operating room, anesthesia with doctor, all cost a total of $1,550!

        I could not have had a better experience.

        Thanks, Phil

  72. Hi Dr. Buck,
    This website is very helpful. My 15 year old son had a laparoscopic appendectomy 3 weeks and 3 days ago. His appendix had not ruptured and we were told by the surgeon that he could return to physical activity as soon as he feels like it. He seemed to estimate 1-2 weeks.
    My son plays football and has not yet started practicing with his team but he is eager to begin. He is having some pain in his lower left abdomen (near an incision site) when he coughs, sneezes, or sits for long periods of time. If he is standing or lying down, he has no pain.
    He has no fever, he has regular bowel movements, good appetite. He describes the pain as a burning and/or pulling sensation. Someone recommended that we should book an ultrasound to see if there is a pinched nerve.
    Curious to know your thoughts on this.

    • Hi Barb,

      I often say about 3-4 weeks before patients return to full physical activity, but kids often need less time….so 2 weeks may be OK in certain situations. It sounds like he may have pulled some tissue that was starting to heal in his incision. That is common after a couple of weeks, when someone goes back to more normal activity. I would have him take a few days off of any rigorous activity and see if it gets better. If it doesn’t, he should see his surgeon. An ultrasound may be helpful in a hernia situation (which is also a possibility), but it will not see a pinched nerve.

      -Dr. Buck

  73. Just to update for those who may suffer from similar problems. My gallbladder had a substantial amount of sludge and had to be removed.

  74. Greetigns Doctor!
    Thank you for this site!
    First – who are these people who are doing track and workouts so soon after their surgery?! They are making me feel either lazy or whimpy or as if there is something wrong! 😀
    My Q: I had Lap App approximately 2.5 weeks ago. My surgeon tells me at 7 day check I can eat whaterver I want, but I am still having pain with return to normal diet. The pain is, well, upon ‘processing’ matter and toward elimination. Normal? When can I eat salads again without horrifying diarreha?
    I also have a cramp-like pain under my ribs with deep breaths and it triggers pain in the area of my app. Normal?
    I have no fever or chills or anything.
    Many thanks!


    P.S. We are told not to lift anything. But then we are sent home and have to pee all the time. This means enevitably using our stomach muscles to get out of bed. See the contradiction? Just funny.

    • Hi Jaime,

      I enjoyed reading your commentary! Haha. Anyways, it’s pretty common to have a period of “adjustment” regarding your bowels after a laparoscopic appendectomy. It sounds like the pain you are experiencing is also fairly common post-op discomfort. I usually tell my patients to give the bowels about 2-3 weeks of recovery time to get back to normal. However, you do want to pay close attention to the diarrhea because if it gets worse, and is accompanied by fevers and chill and increasing abdominal pain it could be an indication that you have a colon infection with a bacteria called “clostridium difficile”. This can be after only 1-2 doses of antibiotics….such as the one you got during and after your surgery. So long story short, I think you are on the right track, but be sure you are improving over the next 48-72 hours, and if you aren’t, you should see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  75. Hello Dr. Buck. I am 65 years old in pretty good shape. (was weight lifting for years until July, 2012, when I pulled a neck and back muscle, probably overtraining) Switched over to walking regularly. On a visit from Philadelphia to Alaska to help with my my grand baby, I ended up with an emergency laproscopic appendectomy on Sept, 22, 10 days ago. The appendix was quite bad, the surgeon related. I asked her several times when I could fly home, but she would not give me a date. Needless to say, it is time for Mom to go home. Do you feel it is safe to make this long trip? It would be a 6 hour trip first from Alaska to Minneapolis then 2.5 hours from Minneapolis to Philadelphia . Thank you very much.

    • Hi Suzanne,

      It sounds like you are doing well and were in pretty good physical shape before the operation. I often send my patients home (on a flight, since Jackson Hole is a tourist spot) anywhere from 48 hours after the operation on. If they are feeling up to it, and have good enough pain control with the PO narcotics without being too sleepy….then I let them fly home. I think you are probably far enough out from the operation to tolerate that flight. I’m sure you will be pretty exhausted when you get home, but just as long as you are prepared for a long, tiring trip mentally, physically you should be OK. In the legal relm…this is probably where I should tell you to see your physician to make sure he thinks you are OK to go home too…..but since you haven’t got an answer from your surgeon, I’ll just tell you this is what I do with my patients when I am able to examine them….and you can decide for yourself whether you are ready to fly home or not.

      Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  76. Hi Doctor!
    Not sure if this posted, so I am re-posting, All apologies if it’s a duplicate.
    I had Lap App 2.5 weeks ago. I have no fever, chills or any other measurable negative indicators.

    I do still have pain – especially with any kind of food beyond a soft diet. My surgeon said 7 days after I could eat anything I want. I ate a salad (my favorite!) and I had an evening of diarreha, multiple trips. Everything I read says I should be past that by now, but I am not. Normal?

    I also have a new pain (last five days or so) upon a deep breath just below my rib cage. It feels cramp-y, sort of like when you’d get a side-ache with running, etc. And when I take a deep breath, I have to consciously relax all my abdominal muscles because it will shoot down to the site of my surgery, where my appendix used to be. Normal?

    Other than those two things I feel ok – as I said, no fever, etc. Just wish my BMs would regulate and that I could get back to normal! Just a note: took the minimum amount of Colace just post-surgery and it gave me diarreha. So I stopped, and now my BMs tend to be too firm – painful and I am afraid (because of the pain) to push the amount I need to.

    I appreciate your comments!


  77. Hi Dr Buck
    It’s been exactly 6months after I had my surgery due to a ruptured appendix and suddenly I feel pain a sharp pain on the right side where my appendix was removed it is not as bad as the pain I felt before I was diagnosed with appendix should I be worried??

    • Hi Priscilla,

      Well, it’s kind of odd that you would have some pain there this far out from the surgery. I suppose it could be some scar tissue on the inside breaking up after some sort of movement you did…..but I think it’s probably best to see your doctor about it.

      -Dr. Buck

  78. Hello,

    I had a lap appendectomy on Oct 3rd and I’m recovering pretty well. However, I have one issue. They shaved my stomach and pubic area and now the right side of my pubic area is sensitive to the touch. It’s been like this for the last week. Is this because of the surgery or because of the hair regrowth? I do not have any skin irritations or a rash, everything looks normal its just become very sensitive.

    Thank you,


    • Hi Michael,

      I think it’s probably due to the shaving. It’s possible that during the surgery some small skin nerves were injured causing some hypersensitivity now, but I think it’s more likely the shaving. If it goes on more than a couple more weeks I would see your doctor about it.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  79. Hi,

    I am in day 2 of recovery from my lap. appendectomy and I am experiencing a strange sensation around the bandage to the fartherest right side. When I touch the area, it’s more tender than the other areas and feels like granules of sand moving around under the skin. I have read that sometimes there are small amounts of air left inside after the surgery. It extends all the way around the bandage and above my right rib cage. As I have read all the previous posts, I have not seen anyone else describe anything quite like what I am experiencing. Could you please offer some insight on what could be causing this and should I be concerned?

    Thank you so very much for your help!

    • Hi Rachel,

      It’s possible that it is air from the surgery….however, I’m quite concerned you may have a aggressive infection. Something called “necrotizing fasciitis” can occur that makes the skin tender, and feel like there are “rice crispies” under the skin. This is an infection with an aggressive bacteria that if left too long can cause terrible tissue destruction. It usually is accompanied by fevers and chills as well. If this is what you are experiencing, you should go directly to the emergency room right away. Again, it could be air under the skin after the surgery somehow, but I think safest thing to do is go to an emergency room right away to have it evaluated. The good news is, the quicker it is treated, the better the outcome.

      -Dr. Buck

  80. Hi Dr Buck! I just had lap app done about 36 hours ago( I’m a 19 yr old female) . Let me tell you, getting diagnosed was a nightmare. The first ER hospital I went to said I had “epigloic appendgitus” or something, and possible appendicitis. Well, I was told the Epi-whatever thing was in my colon, non operable, would heal in a few weeks, but mirrored appendecitis in all the same symptoms. So, they wouldn’t operate and sent me to specialists galore. Turns out, after suffering for 5 more days, I went to a different hospital ER and was immediately admitted and went into lap app the next day. And I never had that stupid colon disease thing, I had JUST appendecitis. Well, I had the surgery yesterday, and I’m definitely a paranoid patient. Although this hospital removed my appendix, they basically gave me no post op instructions, and I felt very rushed in and out. (Your website has been great in giving me some info and piece of mind!) On my discharge sheet, they said I could return to school and work, FULLY by Monday. MONDAY!! That would be like, 2 days afterwards. Now, the pain I’m in right now? If its any indication, I will NOT be up to going anywhere for a little longer than 2 days. 1. Am I abnormal? I know lap app was a shorter recovery time, but 2-3 days seems short to me. 2. I have a TON of air in me. I mean, I look 12 months pregnant. I feel it moving in there, but It’s causing a lot of pain in my shoulder and my chest. 3. I really feel like I can barely breathe, and I can’t tell if its just because of all the air and pressure in me, or if its something else. I feel like I can’t expand my lungs. Should I consider going back to the hospital if the chest/breathing thing doesn’t improve? I’m sorry to bang off these questions to you, but I saw my surgeon for 2 minutes the day before surgery, and never heard of him again. Thanks for reading this! I’m probably being paranoid, but this time last week I was playing tennis, and a week later I’m laid up in terrible pain with a doctor telling me to go back to school and work tomorrow. Your opinion?

    • Hey Shelby,

      Well, I don’t think you are being too paranoid. It sounds as though it’s most likely the air left in the abdomen that is causing the problem. The bloating, shortness of breath, back and shoulder pain are all typical symptoms of this. However, I think being short of breath at anytime that “feels” concerning to you warrants a trip to your doctor at least. They can take your oxygen measurements, get an x-ray etc. to see if it’s just the air left over, or possibly another issue.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  81. Hi Dr,

    I had my laparoscopic apendix surgery about 3.5 weeks ago. My apendix was perforated when I arrived to emergency. Recovery went very well with almost no pain but 5 days after surgery I got a couple of hypoglucemia events, feeling vertigo, nausea and cold sweat for about 30 min. I weighted myself and noticed that I lost almost 11 pounds in 7 days. What might be the reason of this?
    After that event, I started to eat 5 times a day for the following week and since then I have not had any other hypoglucemia event until today (27 days after surgery). I don’t have diarrea neither fever, just very little pain in lower right and lower center part of abdomen. How can I overcome these symptoms? And what might be the cause of this? I read about Crohn disease, but Im not the expert.

    Any comment is very welcome.

    BTW, very nice and informative website. Congrats!


    • Ohh I forgot, Im male 23 yo 187 lb no smoker, no drinker, pretty much with a healthy background, no allergies as well. :)

    • Hi Alex,

      Thanks for the comments on the site! Anyways….honestly, I’m not really sure why you lost that much weight…but I’m not sure it’s a significant problem. If you mean hypoglycemic episodes with sweats and dizziness….then maybe you have an infection in the abdomen where the appendix used to live. This is called a “post-op” abscess. It would be uncommon to see it this far from your surgery but it is certainly possible. I think it would be best to visit your surgeon or personal physician again to double check. I do not think it’s Crohns disease….if it was, it would most likely be seen on the pathology report of the appendix.

      Take care!

      -Dr. Buck

  82. Hi there,

    I had laparoscopic appendectomy surgery on September 14. I had gone into the ER with severe pain the night before and they saw that it was appendicitis. I was admitted into the hospital that night and they waited to do the surgery until morning. At some point in the night my appendix ruptured. After the first surgery I was in extreme pain, with extreme nausea and my body could not fight off the infection despite 2 types of antibiotics and a drain tube. One week later they went into my abdominal cavity and cleaned it out again, fearing that I was not getting better because of abcesses. After a very bad post-op recovery the 2nd time, (one lung was compromised and some kind of heart issue where my heart started pounding like crazy), they put me into the Intermediate Care Unit for 3 days with a heart monitor. I was still having problems with fever due to infection, despite continued antibiotics and a 2nd drain tube. I was returned to the normal care unit a few days later, where I was continued on the antibiotics, but my white blood cell count was triple what it should have been. I was finally sent home on September 26 – 13 days in the hospital!

    I was sent home with both drain tubes in place. They were not removed for another week. I am now recovering somewhat normally. All my incisions look good, my lungs seem to be well healed and I only have slight pain when I take extremely deep breaths or I yawn. I am also moving rather normally and my stamina is slowly increasing. However, my concern is that I still have diarrhea. The diarrhea has not stopped since the first surgery. I am currently waiting the lab results to see if I have C.Diff. Until then, my surgeon recommended Immodium. I have been taking it as directed, however, my stomach is still in pain and it always feels as though I can feel all the digestive movements going around every single part of my intestine, it feels especially worse directly in the middle of my stomach behind my belly button. By the time it hits there, I know I will be heading to the bathroom very quickly. Despite the Immodium, my stools can still be extremely watery or soft. The only change the medicine seems to make is that I go only 3-4 times a day rather than 10-12. Going into the 6th week post-op, do you think this is normal? I am being very careful about what I eat as well. This is a very frustrating problem. Is there any natural solutions you can suggest?

    • Hi Sabrina,

      So sorry to hear you had a rough time with the appendix! It’s good to note for everyone reading these posts that appendicitis, although fairly common and MOST of the time is taken care of in a couple of days can be pretty severe and require a prolonged recovery. Anyways, I think I would be very suspicious of C. Diff. I do not typically recommend immodium to patients who I think may have C. Diff as it can keep the bacteria in the colon for longer….and thus increase the infection. If you are having frequent fevers and chills along with the diarrhea, I think I would seek a second opinion. After six weeks, you should be feeling better than this if everything was ok.

      -Dr. Buck

  83. Hello Dr. Buck,

    Great website, very informative.
    I had laporoscopic appendectomy 2 weeks ago. My appendix was not ruptured just slightly inflamed. I feel pretty good, am walking just fine. However, I have a difficult time sleeping. I am very uncomfortable at night. I wake up very achey and sore, even though I feel good during the day. This concerns me because I am going back to work tomorrow and its a pretty physical job and I need to be able to sleep comfortably and wake up feeling well. Any thoughts? Thank you

    • Hi KS,

      Thanks for the compliment! I’m really not sure why you are having such a tough time sleeping and are uncomfortable. Although, sometimes after surgery your sleep cycle gets thrown off because of pain medication. If you are sleeping during the day or taking naps that you usually did not take, then you will be pretty restless at night. The best thing to do for that is get yourself back on a regular schedule. Make sure you don’t nap in the day, and have a quiet and dark place to sleep at night. The soreness from surgery can last a few weeks, so I think as long as you are not having fevers and chills and increasing abdominal pain I would give it another week to see if it improves.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  84. I had my appendix out a week ago yesterday, yesterday I sneezed and got this awful pain, but there’s still tenderness in the same spot the pain happened in after sneezing. It is in my lower right abdomen, I also get the same pain while coughing but didn’t before yesterday. Could the force of the sneeze have messed with the inside?

    • Hi Ashley,

      I doubt you did any serious damage inside. You may have pulled some scaring tissue on the inside with the sneeze, which can be painful for a few days. If you develop increasing pain, fevers and chills….then you should seek medical attention as soon as possible. I would take it easy for a couple of days and see if it improves….as I think it most likely will.

      Take care!

      -Dr. Buck

  85. OK, a lot of the questions on here address issues that happen shortly after an appendectomy…well, mine was 8 months ago. I had it removed laparoscopically after over 2 weeks of pain. I was mostly asymptomatic…I only had a fever once and very little nausea, just a lot of abdominal pain that changed from day to day. Sometimes, I even had kidney pain. Anyways, once the surgery was over, the surgeon told me that the appendix had been perforated and was badly infected. I had to stay in the hospital for 5 days following the surgery, being pumped full of antibiotics. I had all the “normal” post-op issues…lots of gas, and a lot of diarrhea despite the nurses trying to push stool softeners down my throat. Anyhow…my incisions have healed nicely…sometimes they’re still tender or itchy, but I hear that’s normal.
    My real issue is that I have been having A LOT of gas and heartburn! I have always had a touchy digestive system, but lately it seems I am having some form of gas or heartburn or a combination thereof every single day…no matter what I eat. I still get hungry as normal and eat about the same amounts of food I did before I got sick. However, the after effects are somewhat unsavory. The issues also seem to increase at night. Is this issue related to the appendectomy or am I just crazy? Thanks for taking the time to answer!

    • Hi Cynthia,

      Sorry to hear you’re not feeling well. Although it sounds like you had a pretty rough experience around your appendectomy, I don’t think these two problems are related. I do think you should consult your physician on the best way to proceed from here. Reflux can be a pretty disabling problem, so it’s best to have it evaluated as soon as you can.

      Take care.

      -Dr. Buck

  86. Hi Dr. Buck!

    I just had a laproscopic appendectomy on the 18th. Things are going pretty well so far. I have a 1 and 1/2 year old daughter that I have not been able to pick up since then, and when I spoke to my surgeon he said I could pick her up “as tolerated” which is a bit open ended. My mother in law is here to help for a while, but she has shoulder issues herself and I get nervous about her carrying my sweet baby girl. The nurse at the hospital said to wait 6wks before carrying anything over 15 lbs, which seemed to conflict with what my surgeon said. She also said I might be able to pick her up from a sitting position. Do you have any advice? My baby weighs about 26 lbs. I have a follow up on Nov. 6th. So far, I’m not in very much pain and I’ve been able to get around pretty well.

    Also, I am so paranoid about DVT. Any advice on protecting myself?

    Many thanks in advance,

    • Hi Camille,

      I tell my patients they should not lift anything over 15lbs for 4 weeks after surgery. However….I don’t think many of my patients listen to that! Haha. Anyways, I know other physicians say nothing over 15lbs for 2 weeks, and then pick up “whatever doesn’t hurt” after that. I think the best way to go about it is to start doing more and more activity (and lifting) a little at a time. If try a few things that are increasing in activity from the day before, and make sure you are not really sore the following day. Little by little you can increase over the next week or two to a normal activity (and lifting) level. Also, the best way to prevent DVT is to walk and be active, for most healthy people, this is plenty. Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  87. Hello Dr Buck,

    I had an emergency appendectomy 2 days ago. I am having a lot of pain in my lungs and chest upon inspiration and am feeling very congested. Other than coughing and deep breathing is there anything else I can do to ensure respiratory health and make sure I don’t get pneumonia? Two other concerns were of my throat and gas pain in my shoulders. The gas pain I have in my shoulders is excruciating. Any methods of ridding this? I have been walking around regularly and laying flat but it doesn’t seem to be helping. Also, right upon waking from the surgery my throat pain stood out more than the incision pain. When I got home I realized that my uvula is swollen, blue, and actually cut open on the side with white areas on it. I am assuming that during intubation the tube accidentally cut my throat during the surgery but should I be concerned about this ? It is extremely painful and difficult to eat and drink which is a concern and I worry about infection. Is damage like this common during surgery?
    Any information would be helpful, Thank you so much!

    • Hi Olivia,

      Sorry to hear you are having a rough time. The throat pain and uvula problem is common, and will go away on it’s own. You can try some OTC throat lozenges to see if it helps with the discomfort. The shoulder gas pain is also common after laparoscopic surgery. The best thing for this I’ve found is a combination of motrin (AKA advil or ibuprophen) and a narcotic. It will eventually go away, but I know it’s pretty bad for a bit. Unfortunately I can’t really give you specific drug names and doses in a forum like this, but your family doctor should be able to do that. For most healthy people, coughing and deep breathing is usually enough to prevent against pneumonia. If you already have lung problems such as emphysema, COPD or cardiac problems such as CHF, I would refer you to your doctor for specific advise. Hope this helps.

      -Dr. Buck

  88. Hi there. I am 3 and a half weeks out from my Laparoscopic Appendectomy (female, age 38). It was routine and uncomplicated once they diagnosed it. Before the surgery I was lifting weights (heavy, low reps) and working out at the gym 5-6 days a week. I even worked out the morning I started having pain and ended up in the ER with appendicitis later that day. I noticed your recommendations were more cautious than my surgeon’s regarding resuming weightlifting and exercise after ‘lap app’. My surgeon said after 2 weeks I could resume my workouts and as long as it didn’t hurt, I could do it. I stayed out of the gym for a week and a half and then for the last 2 weeks I did a modified, very isolated (tried not to engage my core) light weight lifting workout 3 times each week. I was pretty drained and couldn’t do more. I felt so much better today and got a little ahead of myself. I increased my intensity and went heavier on weights. I felt great until toward the end I started to have sharp pain in my abdomen. I ended my workout when I felt this but have been in pain all day (it feels sharp around my belly button also crampy). Is it possible to have injured my incisions (they are so tiny)? Do you recommend going back to my modified light workout for a week or staying out of the gym altogether? What should I pay attention to to know if I would need to consult my surgeon again? Thanks so much for your willingness to answer questions on your site!

    • Hi Jessica,

      Well I have to applaud you for taking care of yourself by working out and eating right! I think you probably just “strained” the incision in your belly button area. The main reason I tell people not to lift anything over 15lbs. for 4 weeks is to reduce the chance of a hernia. For many people 2 weeks is OK, but the incision strength at 6 weeks is only about 60%….so I’m conservative to avoid another problem down the road. Of course everyone is different, and someone young and healthy like yourself is less prone to a hernia than a 75 year old woman with diabetes who takes steroids for an autoimmune disease….so there is some wiggle room based on patient as well. I would take about 48 hours off of the lifting and see if it improves. My bet is that the pain will improve and you can go back to the light lifting after that. Then, when you are ready to increase the activity, increase it by small increments over about 2 weeks…until you are back to regular weights in 2-4 weeks.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks so much for the advice! That is totally reasonable and doable. I don’t want to be foolish but it is so hard to stay out of the gym completely. Thanks again for your time!

  89. Hello,
    tomorrow makes a week after my lap appendectomy and I wasn’t experiencing any pain in my stomach until last night. It’s above my naval and it happens when I touch my stomach or walk a lot. I’m not sure if it requires immediate attention.

    Please help! Thank you.

    • Hi Laicellis,

      If you are having fevers, chills and increasing abdominal pain I think you should see your physician soon. It’s possible you may be developing an infection. If you are not experiencing fevers & chills, and it’s just pain in your navel that improves over the next 24 hours with rest…then it may have been just that you pulled the incision a little too much with some activity, and you need a little rest.

      -Dr. Buck

  90. Dear Dr Buck,

    I had a lap appendectomy on the 7th September following RIF pain. The surgery went well, I had a slight infection in the right incision site which has since cleared. However I am a little concerned as i still have pain over the side incision sites. I was diagnosed with endometriosis at the time of surgery which was on my appendix (the appendix did not show any sign of infection) I am not sure if the pain is related to the endo or the surgery! Many thanks for your advice 😀

    • Hi Ashlea,

      Unfortunately I don’t think I’ll be able to give you a good answer in this format. This is a little bit tougher to diagnose than the “normal” post-operative laparoscopic appendectomy problems. If you have not returned to see your physician about this, I suggest you do in the next week or or so. I would think you incisional site pain would be improved at this point….but sometimes they can still be sore this far out from the surgery. Either way, a trip to your physician is best.

      Take care!

      -Dr. Buck

  91. Hello! I had my lap surgery to remove my appendix October 4th. The doctor used glue instead of stiches. There was no tape or anything over the glue. I have been taking it easy and just saw a personal trainer 2 days ago. Yesterday I was sore but today I feel worse! It is very tender and sore when you touch around my belly button. Also I still have a little scab on the incision right below my belly button. What do you think happened and what do you recommend?

    • Hi Hannah,

      I think you probably over-exerted yourself at some point over the last week without knowing it. I think if you give it a couple of days and see if it gets better you are probably OK. If the pain increases over the next 48 hours, you should probably see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  92. Hi Dr Buck
    Im 18 years old, and got my appendix done through keyhole surgery 6 weeks ago. I am feeling a constant and crippling pain below the belly button and to the left of it where one of the incisions are. This pain is always there and it gets worse when I carry a bag to school etc. I went to school last week and went in for 3 days but by day 4 I didnt even have the energy to get up and stayed off school for the next 2 days. I havent felt like myself since getting this done and i still feel that im in pain, still on paracetamol everyday which mildly takes the pain away. What should I do to try and get rid of this pain, as I feel this is quite long to still be suffering with pain. I also get pain where the appendix is but is not as sore as below the belly button and to the left of it

    • Hi Alex,

      Well, I think the only thing to do is to see your surgeon again. At 6 weeks from the surgery, you should be getting much better, instead of worse. I’m not exactly sure what is going on, but either way, you should see your surgeon as soon as you can.

      -Dr. Buck

  93. Hey Dr. Buck,

    Just had a Laproscopic Appendectomy on the 9th and was released from the hospital yesterday. I just have a couple of questions that are worrying me.
    1. When does the over excessive bloating go away? I look like a pregnant woman and I walk like a hunched old man.
    2. Am I supposed to have shoulder and lung pain when I take deep breathes?
    3. Should I start taking over the counter laxatives to start having bowel movements? I mean it’s only been two days… I was constipated before the surgery, so I’m really not sure when I’ll have a bowel movement.
    4. Is it ok to take Hydrocodone/APAP (Vicodin) and Ondansetron (Zofran) combined? Both were prescribed by my doctor.
    5. What foods should I try to stay away from?
    6. And finally, when will it be ok to sleep on my stomach? (This is how I normally sleep) After all the bloating goes away (I hope) will I be able to sleep on my stomach/sides?


    • Hi Alexander,

      1. The bloating will slowly return to normal over the next couple of weeks.
      2. The shoulder pain is usually from the air left in the abdomen after the surgery…although this is fairly common, it can be very uncomfortable and incapacitating at times. If this is increasing in pain and discomfort, you should see your surgeon
      3. Yes. I recommend to my patients they take Milk of Magnesia and Senokot…both over the counter.
      4. Yes, both of those medications are OK together.
      5. There is really no restriction on your diet after a laparoscopic appendectomy
      6. You can sleep on your stomach whenever it is comfortable for you. At this point I don’t think you are in any danger of damaging the incisions.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  94. i am on day 6 since surgery after appendix burst i still dont feel well and am quite breathless my stomach is about the size of a 6 month pregnant woman when will i feel normal? and i work with profoundly multiple disabled adults-wheelchairs and hoisting, when will i be able to return to work? Thankyou

    • Hi Jacquie,

      Hopefully your belly is feeling better by now. If you haven’t, you should probably see your doctor. I think if you are lifting adults, you should wait about 4 weeks to start that again after surgery.

      -Dr. Buck

  95. Hi Dr. Buck,
    Thanks you so much for this website – it’s wonderful.
    My 22-year-old son had a laparoscopic appendectomy three days ago. He was sent home in good shape the day after the surgery. However, this morning he started having a lot of nausea and throwing up. The doctor said that this is due to constipation, and gave him an enema and some constipation medicine. He has moved his bowels several times since then; however, the nausea and throwing up has not stopped.
    What are the possible causes of this symptom?

    • Hi Lisa,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you late..I had a busy week! Hopefully he has resolved his symptoms by now. If not you should definitely take him in to see his surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

      • We did take him back, as the throwing up did not stop. It turned out he had ilius. It took a few days, but he’s now eating again, and should be released from hospital tomorrow.

  96. Hi!

    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy on Saturday, 10 November. So far, no complications. I’ve been eating relatively normally, sleeping well, am no longer really taking any pain meds (and only ever took regular extra strength Tylenol anyway), and am getting more and more comfortable moving around.

    I’m 24F, 5’8, and before the surgery, I was about 120lbs. I’ve lost about 5lbs since getting sick and the surgery and so on, which is quite a bit for someone my size. I was also relatively active – just ran a 10km race in September, go rock climbing (intermediate) at least 1-2 times per week, and was attending a zumba class once per week as well.

    I know that I need to return to activity slowly, so I’m planning to do sort of a modified “learn-to-run” program to get back into running. But what about rock climbing? It’s rather intense, especially on your core, and definitely requires more strength than your suggested no more than 15lbs. Any ideas on when I can safely start that up again? I really want to be active again, but I definitely don’t want to risk any complications that could have been avoided.

    Thanks so much for any advice!

    • Hey Elle,

      Great to hear you are so active! That will serve you well in the future:) Anyways….I do a little rock climbing myself a couple times per year (Grand Teton a couple years ago….Mt. Moran in GTNP last year)…so I know what you mean about intense on the core. I think you can start to increase your activity with jogging and running as you feel well enough to do that. I think you should wait to climb for about 4 weeks…but in the meantime, you should increase your activity up to the intensity level of climbing. That’s probably the safest way to get back into the swing of things for you.

      Take care-

      Dr. Buck

  97. Hi dr buck.i had an appendectomy 6weeks up till now i av a swelling on the incision sight.i hav seen my surgeon severally bt he says its an infection which an antibiotic would take care of.have had sereis of antibiotic bt its stil there.even wen my doctor had to cut it open there ws this pus like liquid that came out.nw its swollen again.should i kip takin d antibiotics or do i burst it again

    • Hi Patience,

      I think you should see your doctor again. It sounds like the antibiotics are not working and you he probably needs to open it up again or clean it.

      -Dr. Buck

  98. Hi Dr. Buck-
    I just had surgery for my appendix almost 4 weeks ago. October 26 2012… I am having these sharp back pains on the left side where the did the incisions.. and burning, tingling sensations in my left thigh area when im sleeping… Saw doctor, incisions looked good, let me go back to work, but i told him about the pain in the legs and he said oh it has nothing to do with surgery. I seem to be in more pain now then when surgery happened… what should i do?

    • Hi Carrie,

      This is tough to tell what exactly is going on. It’s possible there was an injury to a nerve that supplies the left thigh skin during the surgery, however, it would be very rare and actually quite unlikely. I think you should see your Family Doctor so he can do a thorough history and examination and maybe he will have more insight to what is going on. It’s possible your surgery uncovered a different reason for the pain.

      -Dr. Buck

  99. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I had my laparoscopic appendectomy a couple of months ago & am completely fine now. I just have one question. My doctor put me on a restriction with lifting that I am unsure is necessary. He said nothing over 20 lbs. for 8 weeks. Is this something normal or was this possibly excessive? I have had 3 prior abdominal surgeries, but he made no mention of why he placed such a long period of time on the restriction and trusting him I didn’t think to ask, but now I am having issues with my job and insurance company regarding the length of restriction and just want a second opinion regarding the matter. I would really appreciate any feedback since I am not a doctor and can’t be sure if this sounds common or not.

    Thank You,

    • Hi Tiffany,

      I usually tell my patients between 2 weeks to 6 weeks depending on their specific physiology and past medical/surgical history. It may be that he’s just being cautious because of your previous surgeries. It’s usually better to over-estimate when you can return to normal activities than under-estimate and get a hernia and require another operation! So, do I think 8 weeks is long? For most of my patients yes, but since I don’t know all of your history, then I would defer to your doctor who knows you best. In all, I think he is looking out for your best interest:)

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  100. Doc, it’s been 3 1/2 weeks since the surgery and my whole ab area looks “full,” like I ate a big meal or something. I am still sore, which I expect will be the case for awhile. But I have a sharp pain right above my waste-line in the center when I urinate, pass gas, or have a bowl movement. What do you think is going on? Is it normal?

    Bobby B

    • Hey Bobby,

      Sometimes it does take awhile to get back to “normal”. I believe the pain will improve with time. There is actually a ligament that stretches from your navel to your bladder that sometimes can be irritated by the surgery….and cause the midline pain you are talking about. I think this will improve with time as well.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  101. Hi Doctor,

    My son 10 years old, had the appendicitis open surgery last monday, tuesday it was fine for him, wednesday he vomited little and they gave some injection and after that it was okay. He was discharged on friday and reached home fine. But today morning when he had his morning tea started vomiting and is having stomach pain. Till night he couldn’t able to eat or drink anything, whatever he had was vomited. Also he is having pain in the stomach. Now he is given two injection for vomiting and two for pain. Can you please tell me what could be the reason.

    • Hi John-Paul,

      It’s possible his bowels have not “woken up” from surgery yet. This is common after abdominal surgery. It’s also possible the pain medication is making him sick, or that he has an infection in his abdomen. Hopefully he is back in the hospital where they can manage his pain and diagnose his issue. If not, I suggest you take him back.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  102. Doc,

    I had Lap. Ap. 3 weeks ago and I have noticed a pain that feels much like the symptoms of appendicitis, except it is on the left side, about two inches under the incision….any thoughts.

    • Hi Billy,

      It’s probably that you pulled the incision somehow. I would give it a few days and I think it will get better..if it doesn’t in a couple days you should see your physician.

      -Dr. Buck

  103. I had a laparoscopic appendectomy yesterday morning. In addition, they removed my right ovary. After the surgery I was able to void without much of a problem. Today, I am having problems voiding and my legs and abdomen are swollen like balloons. Is that normal?

    • Hi Selena,

      It’s common to have swelling after a surgery. You are usually given a lot of fluid…in addition, there is often air left in the abdomen after from the laparoscopy. I would give it a few days to see if it starts to get better.

      -Dr. Buck

  104. Hi

    I had my laproscopic appendectomy on friday, 16.11.12. It was an emerency op and they also found cysts on my ovary which they removed. I had a fever and severe headaches on sunday following the op and was discharged on monday 19.11.12. However, my headaches are still severe. I had a slight temp this morning 21.11.12 but it’s the headaches that are so sore. The pain from the op is manageable. What could the headaches be from


    • Hi Charleen,

      Many times people have headaches from things they stop while in the hospital….like coffee or nicotine. If you have stopped either of these I suggest adding coffee back, or a nicotine patch. Other times its from taking the narcotics after surgery. If that’s the case, I suggest adding motrin or tylenol.

      Take care

      -Dr. Buck

  105. My 16 year old son had a laparoscopic appendectomy one week ago. He does not have pain at the incisions. He is still in the hospital due to a fever 102.7 that started two days after surgery. They put him on a five day IV antibiotic Ithink Anvans . The surgeons are doing a CT scan today. They said they needed to wait one full week for an abscess to form. He is comfortable , has diahria, but just the fever. What other questions should I be asking?

    • Hi Todd,

      Sounds like he probably has an abscess and they are doing the right thing. It’s really best to wait one week for the CT because before that its tough to differential between just normal fluid in the abdomen after surgery, and an abscess. I really don’t think there is much more to ask…it’s a fairly common problem after surgery…especially with kids and teens. However, if he does have an abscess, it’s best treated with a CT or ultrasound guided drain, instead of another surgery. On certain occasions, it’s necessary to have another surgery, and in those cases, it should be done laparoscopically as well. If they surgeons want to do an open surgery, then I would start asking questions like why can he have the CT or ultrasound drainage, and why can’t it be done laparoscopically. Most kids do pretty well with this, so I wouldn’t be too concerned just yet.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Dr Buck,
        Now that my son had the abcess drained we are 2 days out. He just spiked a lower grade 101F degree fever. We believe this was the first since his abscess draining procedure. He is eating better now and is not distended. He still h as diahria. He has a drain and is still on 1 time per day invenz. Should we be looking for other answers?


        • Hi Todd,

          Sounds like the right way to go. I think from now it’s just antibiotics and waiting until there is nothing coming out of the drain. Once that happens, they can take the drain out and he’ll be done as long as the drain gets all the bacteria out. It will probably take 10 or so days depending on the size of the abscess.

          -Dr. Buck

  106. Dear Dr. Buck,

    I had an appendectomy on Tuesday night and was released Wed. morning. I feel very bloated and gasy, but cannot pass gas, only a bit of diahria (with lots of straining). I also have chills and vomiting. Would it improve by itself or should I see the doctor?

    • Hi Jenni,

      Its possible it is self-limiting, but I think you should return to the ER or your doctor anyways. If you are vomiting, you can’t keep any pain medication down, you are just going to feel worse and worse. I think just a little TLC with some IV medication for 24 hours will do the trick. It’s always possible there is a problem, and if there is, they can diagnose it as well.

      Happy Thanksgiving! 😉

      -Dr. Buck

  107. Hello, I had my appendix removed 2 weeks ago and now I have several problems, maybe it´s normal but I just need to ask.

    First, I sometimes feel a weak pain in the right lower abdomen, maybe it´s normal by the recovery, it´s really weak. When I try to knock on that place as the doctors were knocking when they were examinating me, the pain is a bit stronger but still it isn´t very strong. Is it possible that there is again some kind of inflammation? I can walk normally, I feel no pain when moving with right leg as I felt before operation and everything gets better each day. I also sometimes feel a weak pain of my stomach or something close to it. Is it a problem?

    Secondly, I have a bulge or something like that, under my wounds. It is also over one of them. Here is a photo. It isn´t visible but I still wonder why it is there. The place where I can feel the bulge is marked. When I lie or sit down it is still there so I don´t think it is a hernia.
    Thank you for your answer.

    • Hi Mike,

      I think if you don’t have fevers and chills, and the abdominal pain is improving (even if it’s improving slowly) then you are probably on the right track. It’s tough to tell what exactly the bulge is. It’s possible its just post-operative swelling, tissue that was bound up with a stitch, or an actual hernia. Hernias can remain even if you lay flat (we call that an “incarcerated” hernia…which can be bowels or just some fat from the abdomen). If you are not having pain at the site of the bulge, I think you can see your physician at your leisure. If you are having lots of pain, you should see your doctor soon.

      Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Actually I have no pains, fevers, chills…everything seems to be allright, today I was even on a long walk and I had no pains, only in shoulder but it´s OK as I read, so I wonder if hernias hurt and if I can have two/three hernias at once, because I have the bulge under all three wounds (the third one is very small, but I think I can feel a little bulge under it as well) I just wonder why the bulge under wound on a picture is longer and reaches further than the wound. Could the laparoscope somehow irritated a bigger area? And are post-operative swellings common? And how long does it take until they disappear?

        Thank you again Dr. Buck, you are doing great thing and you helped many people :)

  108. Dr Buck
    Per my last email my 16 yr old son spiked a 102.7 fever this afternoon. Two days after his absces being drained. The are doing a culture on the absces The doctors have also changed his antibiotic. I’d there anything else I should be asking


    • Getting the cultures to make sure you have the right antibiotics. The other thing that may be happening is the drain may not be getting all of the abscess. If he continues to have temps on the right antibiotics, he probably will need another CT to see if there is some abscess left. I would wait a few days (4-5 since last one) before CT again though.

  109. Dr Buck
    Should we worry that my sons fever is still here after one week. His drain still gets some thick liquid


  110. Dear Dr. Buck

    I just had my appendix removed a week ago. Every thing is going well im not in pain and feeling great. I only have one problem 2 days after my surgery i woke up with what i thought was a very bad stiff neck its very painful and the pain goes in to my shoulder as well i now take my pain meds for my shoulder pain its even painful when i sleep on my side. Regardless of which side it is. My neck and shoulder pain is on the right. Is this normal or is something wrong i have had the pain for 5 days now and it has not got any better the only time i dont feel the pain is when i take pain killers.


    • Hi Ray,

      It could be related to the position you were in during your surgery when you were a sleep. I think it’s probably best if you see your surgeon and let him know about this. It may just resolve on it’s own with time, but I think you should be evaluated.

      -Dr. Buck

  111. Dr Buck
    We have now been in hospital for 12 days from my sons appendectomy. The drained the absces last Wed and he still has been spiking one fever a day. The infectious disease doctors are now involved. They did blood cultures again and also checked his white blood count which is still normal. His drainage has almost stopped and they say they will remove the drain. The doc says he has been on antibiotics for so long this may just take longer for him to heal
    He was also tested for CDiff and that was neg. he still has diahria but it is not as often. Now what should we be asking?


    • I think I would probably repeat the CT scan 7 days from the last one at this point. I would continue the antibiotics while he still has fevers. Another thought is fungal infection. Fungal infections can also happen on antibiotics….however, in young healthy people it is less likely. If there is no abscess left on the CT scan, and he still has fevers, he may need a break from the antibiotics.

    • Hi Todd,

      Just wanted to follow up and see how your son is doing.

      -Dr. Buck

  112. Dr. Buck,
    I had exploratory laparoscopy surgery and ended up having my appendix taken two weeks ago. I have been having stinging pain on my left side for over a week now. I have no fever, chills but nausea. I have been walking and experiencing sharp stinging pain almost like it’s tearing. Is this normal or should I be concerned?

    Appreciate your help!

    • Hi Shannon,

      It may be you just over did the activity too early and that incision had some tearing of the newly healed tissue. I would give it a couple of days with some rest and motrin/advil. I think it will probably be OK. If it does not improve over the next 48 hours, you should see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  113. Dr. Buck,

    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy on 11/14/12. Would 3 weeks post op. be to soon to have a orthopedic massage on my back due to a previous muscle injury? Also when can I resumelight swimming? Im a 34yr old male in great shape and starting to get stir crazy!!!


    • Hey John,

      Usually I tell my patients who are young and healthy they can start light activity in 2 weeks. So I think you are OK with light swimming. I think the massage is OK too.

      Take care

      -Dr. Buck

  114. Dr. Buck,

    Back in 2002 i had an inguinal hernia surgery in which the tissues were re-inforced with a mesh material (doctors back then called it a “net”). Recently, I had an emergency Laparoscopic Appendectomy. One of the incisions is about two inches above the scar from the hernia surgery.

    Four weeks after the appendectomy, I noticed that the area around the hernia surgery scar was slightly bumped and I have some discomfort in the area for the last couple of days. Could it be that the area is just swollen or is it likely that the hernia returned?

    • Hi Frank,

      It is possible you have a recurrent hernia. It’s also possible it is swelling from the surgery. I think the best thing to do is to see your surgeon to he can do a physical exam to determine which one it is.

      Hope this helped!

      -Dr. Buck

  115. Hi Dr.Buck,

    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy on Nov 14/12 (13 days ago) and also am being treated with riveroxaban for a small clot in my illiac vein. I was just wondering if it was normal for my stomach to still be bloated and how long it usually takes for bloating to go down?
    I was on stool softeners until a couple of days ago and my bowels are slowly returning to normal but not quite yet, other than that my recovery has been good.


    • Hi Vanessa,

      It’s pretty normal to be bloated after this surgery. I think you should be improving by now, but a little bloating is still normal at this point. I would say if it doesn’t resolve in another week to see your doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

  116. Hi Dr. Buck

    I had a lap appendectomy on the 26th of september. I still have excrutiating pain(almost as bad as prior to the operation) and it has already been 9 weeks… Is this normal?

    • Hi Simone,

      This is not normal. I think you should see your surgeon about this…it’s just been too long after the operation.

      Take care.

      -Dr. Buck

  117. Hi Dr Buck,

    Thanks for all the advice on here, you have helped so many people! I had a laparoscopic appendectomy 13 weeks ago and have been healing nicely. However, two days ago I did some heavy lifting for the first time moving two 46lb speakers. I had been lifting some lighter objects after 6 weeks but this was the first time I attempted something so heavy.

    I felt fine doing it but about half an hour later I began to feel a lot of stiffness and soreness around my abdomen, and I’m still feeling it now 48 hours later. The incisions are fine and I don’t feel any pain around them but it is stiff/sore around my stomach and to the right of my abdomen.

    Could I have damaged something inside by lifting these speakers, or is it just because the muscles haven’t been used in such a long time? I have been really careful until now.

    Thank you for any help in advance!

    • PS – I’m not in really bad pain with this – its just stiff/uncomfortable since I did the lifting. Thanks.

    • Hi Russ,

      Most likely its just the tissue that was healing was strained. Anytime you start to do more activity after surgery, there is some strain on the incisions and it’s possible that it will cause some soreness like you are experiencing. If you have a bulge in the navel area, then that is something different (incisional hernia). I think if you give it 48 more hours it should get better. If it doesn’t improve by then, you should see your doctor.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you Dr. Buck – I really appreciate your advice and help :)

  118. Hi,

    Thanks so much for this website, I’ve found reading your comments very helpful.

    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy 3 weeks ago, I think I’m generally healing quite well but the left incision point is still quite sore, red, swollen and hurts to touch, which if anything seems to be a bit worse than it was. I don’t have a fever, nausea or any other symptoms, the other 2 incision points seem to be healing fine, with no soreness when touched. Should I do anything about this, or is it likely to heal itself?

    • Hi Jill,

      It sounds like you have a either a wound infection, or a stitch that is trying to come to the surface. It’s a little farther out from the surgery for an infection, so I would be it’s a stitch. Either way, you should probably see your surgeon to be sure.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  119. Hello Dr. Buck,

    I’m 24 years old and two weeks post op laparoscopic appendectomy, 18/11/2012, They never did remove my appendix as it was too swollen and dangerous at the time, and it had burst by the time I had made it to the table. Now my doctor says there isn’t a need to remove it, says the body will heal it itself (from my understanding of what he said). I was a very healthy person before the appendicitis, quite active and eating well balanced & organic meals.

    I am seeing some light swelling of my whole abdomen when after a small activity as in cooking a meal or standing watching an art exhibit for an hour, and still have pain when gas is moving in my abdomen or during a bowel movement, Is this normal at this point?

    My wounds look like they are healing well, a small vertical one on the mid-left of my abdomen is slightly raised causing me a bit of worry but there isn’t any redness to it. So I’m not inclined to go to the ER, I can’t go to a clinic because I’m not from this province so I’d have to pay for it all out of pocket.

    I have a good appetite and my energy levels are like waves throughout the day. My appointment with my Operating Doctor isn’t for another 2 weeks.

    Thank you very much,

    • Hi Roben,

      It’s normal to have some swelling after an operation….but by this time, it should be starting to improve. Since this is about two weeks now, it should be improving. Also, the abdominal pain should be improving as well. If either of these is getting worse, I would go in to see your doctor. As for the incision, it could be a suture that is trying to come to the surface. If it is red and painful, and increases with pain over the net 24 hours, I would also see a physician.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you very much for your help, I’m glad to have found your website, I hadn’t been given much information from the hospital so I had to search it out myself.

        I really appreciate the effort and care you present to people online, not every one would do that.

        So Thank you.

        Gratefully yours,

  120. Hi Buck,

    Today is the day after my surgery and I’m running a fever of 38.3 C. I have a very sore throat and am wondering if this is cause for concern.
    Please let me know if I should go back to hospital.

    • Hi Mariya,

      It can be normal to have a fever the day after the surgery. Most of the time it is from what we call “atelectasis”. This is from some cells in the lung reacting to some collapse due to the operation. It’s important to take appropriate pain medication so you can take nice deep breaths. Try to take 10 deep breaths per hour….and more if you are feeling up to it. This will help improve the lung after the surgery and the fever should go away. If the fever persists more than 48 hours after the surgery, you should see your doctor. The sore throat is from being put to sleep…the tube used to breath for you can irritate the throat. You can take some over the counter lozenges for this to see if it helps. This should go away in a couple days.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  121. I had a lap app 2.5 weeks ago. I’m still having quite a bit of pain on my lowest incision, but right after surgery I had a HUGE bruise around this same incision. I had a follow up appt with the surgeon four days ago and be thinks I may have some nerve damage and that this is causing the pain. Neurontin was prescribed. Is this common?

    • Hi Jennifer,

      Although not what I would call “common”, it does happen. Unfortunately I think the best thing to do would be to take the neurontin and some motrin if you have not tried that et. It should improve, but I would guess it will be slow improvement.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Dr Buck,

        Your responses are kind, helpful and much appreciated. Thank you for helping us all navigate surgery.

  122. Dr Buck,

    How does CRPS happen due to Jennifer’s type of surgery, as a complication?

    • Hi Brian,

      I’m not sure if what Jennifer has is exactly CRPS or just an irritated nerve after being “beat up” by surgery. CRPS is not exactly a straightforward diagnosis or treatment, and I think in her case, only time will tell.

      -Dr. Buck

  123. Hi Dr. Buck,
    I went into hospital yesterday (12/3/12) for a laproscopic hernia operation. When I came round after surgery, my consultant informed me that instead of repairing my hernia, he had removed my appendix. Apparently the appendix had fused with the hernia and was inflamed. He decided to remove the appendix and flush out the so called muck that it had caused but to leave the hernia repair until February/ March as he didn’t want any infection to appear around the mesh. From what I understood the hernia cavity is still there and has been flushed and cleaned. I have three incisions. The main one is umbilical and then one either side.
    I had planned for a 2 hour flight on the 15th December (12 days after hernia op) but am now not sure if this is would be a problem after it now being an appendix op. What would be your advice? Also what should I be doing in the first week? i.e. walking/eating etc.
    Thank you.

    • Hi Pat,

      Of course everyone is different, but in general it’s not a problem to fly 12 days after a hernia or appendix surgery. There is an increased risk for DVT and PE, so ambulating at least every 2 hours if it’s a long flight is recommended. If you have other risk factors such as obesity or cancer, it’s best to ask your surgeon, because he knows your specific situation. Walking and regular daily activities are fine the first week. I do not put a restriction on my patients’ diet after appendectomy or hernia operation.

      -Dr. Buck

  124. Hi, I’m a 25 Female. I had an emergency Lap App last Thurs, Nov 29th. The surgery went well, my appendix had not ruptured but it was enflamed. I came home the same day and have just been resting since then. I haven’t worked or even left home, I’ve just not felt well enough to do much. The incisions seem to be healing well and I’m not in any significant pain. My bowels are back to normal and I’m passing liquids without any problems. I’ve been experiencing a lot of dizziness and some lightheadedness. I feel fine when I am sitting down but when I get up to do much I just feel ‘off’. The RN did give me a patch behind my ear after surgery to help with the nausea. I read online that the side affects to that patch can be blurred vision. Over the past few days my vision has gotten better since I removed the patch after the prescribed 3 days (2 days ago). I just still feel like my vision is off and possibly the cause of my dizziness. Do you have any thoughts as to the cause of my lightheadedness/dizziness. Is it something I should be concerned about? Thanks so much for your input!!!

    • Hi Jenna,

      I’m really not sure what exactly is going on with the dizziness, but I do think it’s significant and far enough out from the surgery to warrant a return to your surgeon or family physician. It could be a number of things, but I think it’s best to be evaluated in person. Sorry I’m not much help on this one!

      -Dr. Buck

  125. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I’m 2 1/2 weeks post-op and am having some soreness, slight warmth, and swelling over the largest incision after what was probably too much activity (including some accidental lifting and twisting… OOOPS). After reading the previous posts, it seems that either I’ve strained the healing tissues, possibly to the point of a hernia(??), or a stitch is trying to work its way out.

    My question is: if someone does mess things up enough to cause a hernia at the incision, what is usually done for that? Can it be fixed, or does it heal on its own, or does it cause permanent damage? Is it worth going back to the doctor, or should I just take it veeerrrrrry easy for the next few weeks?

    Your site is very interesting and informative. I was amazed to see how many people you have helped, and impressed by how thorough and caring you are in your responses. Thank you so much for providing this service.

    • Hi Sandy,

      Thanks so much for the compliments! That means a lot coming from patients I have never met! 😀

      You are right about your diagnosis. Most of the time it’s just a strain. If it is a hernia, usually there is a small bulge under the incision….in which case it would need to be surgically repaired, but probably not right away. I would take it veerrrrry easy (as you would say) for about a eek and see if it improves. My bet is that it will. If it doesn’t, or there is a prominent bulge developing, I would return to your surgeon.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  126. Hi. My 4 year old son had a lap appendectomy on the 10th of November. I thought he had a stomach virus so I didn’t take him to urgent care until he got really bad (about 3 days after vomiting and diarrhea started). He got worse because the appendix was perforated. Surgery went well but he did develop 2 abscesses. 1 was superficial and a drain was placed. An hour after the drain procedure was complete our nurse wanted to move him from the transport bed back to his bed because she said we couldn’t have 2 beds in the room. He was only still on the transport bed because he doesn’t handle anesthesia well and the recovery nurse thought it would be best if he decided when he wanted to move back to his bed. Our nurse grew inpatient and said we couldn’t wait any longer. She and the tech attempted to drag him from one bed to the other with the bed sheet. My son was lying on his side on the drain tube. I asked her to stop and she refused. By dragging him, she ripped the drain tube right out. The surgeon decided to wait and see if antibiotics would take care of it since some fluid was drained in the hour the drain was in. After 3 more days of iv antibiotics his white count went back up and another ultrasound showed that the abscess was still almost as large as it was prior to the drain being placed. My son was taken 15 hours later for a second drain. The Dr. said he was unable to see an abscess (procedure was done under ct) therefore no drain was placed. I thought that something else was wrong or missed because the abscess was there 15 hours prior. The Dr ordered another white count which was 14.6. My son was discharged the same day after an 11 day hospital stay. He is 25 days post op and still complaining of pain. One minute he is fine and the next he is doubled over in pain. It goes away as fast as it comes. He had diarrhea for 19 days total and it just went away a few days ago…so we thought. Tonight he had pretty bad diarrhea again. We have seen the surgeon twice since he was discharged (2nd appointment was this morning) and he said he wants to take the “wait and see” approach. He doesn’t want to expose my son to any unnecessary radiation which I understand. It’s been extremely difficult to get a clear understanding of my son’s pain since he’s only 4. He just can’t explain the pain. Should I be concerned about the recurring pain and diarrhea? Sorry for this being so long. I though the history would help. The surgeon is great and I do trust him but I waited to have him checked out when the pain began and his appendix perforated. I don’t want to wait and have something else happen. Should I be concerned? Thanks so much!

    • Hi Jami,

      Well I’m certainly sorry to hear your son has had such a rough time! It is sometimes really tough to tell what is going on with kids so don’t fault yourself for taking him in “late”. This is a pretty common occurrence with kids, which accounts for the much higher rate of perforated appendices and abscesses among kids. There are a couple of things I’m thinking right now. First, it’s possible that your son has a colon infection called “C-Diff”. It’s basically when you get a long course of antibiotics and they antibiotics kill of a lot of the “good bacteria” in the colon and let the “bad bacteria” proliferate to a point that it becomes overwhelming. That can cause continued pain, increased white count and diarrhea. If he was getting “flagyl or metronidazole” it is unlikely he has that infection because that’s actually the treatment. If he wasn’t, then it may be something to consider. Second, it’s of course possible that he still has some abscess left over. This can make the bowels “angry” as I like to say, and cause crampy pain which comes and goes out of nowhere. Of course it can also cause the diarrhea and white count. I’ll have to say it’s a bit confusing about what exactly happened with the abscess….whether it was there or not is unclear. I think if it was me I would repeat the ultrasound to see if there is any evidence of abscess. If there is, it may be able to be drained under ultrasound or CT if needed. If there is no evidence of abscess on ultrasound, then maybe wait and see for a few more days with a repeat of the white count in 72 hours. If he continues to have fevers, or if the abdominal pain gets worse, then go ahead and take him in to the ER without waiting for a doctors/surgeon appointment (unless the surgeon can see him right away). Unfortunately the case is not exactly straightforward, but I hope I could provide some insight for you.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you so much. He is doing ok today but I did put a call in to the surgeon. He was prescribed flagyl but apparently there aren’t very many pharmacies that can do it in liquid form. (That’s what the Dr. told us upon discharge) We tried cutting the pills down, mashing them and putting them in yogurt, drinks etc but the chalky pill taste made him throw up every time. The dr told us to stop the flagyl and just continue the augmentin, which we did. I was extremely confused about the abscess as well. The dr said what he found during the procedure was a clot and not an abscess. Since it was done under ct he said he was sure. Perhaps ultrasound showed the clot and the Dr assumed it was the abscess?…I’m not sure. By that time it was day 11 at the hospital and I was so exhauseted and couldn’t think clearly enough to ask more detailed questions. Anyhow, thank you for your response and input!

  127. Hey Dr. Buck , i’ve recently had surgery for my appendix to be taken out 3 months ago & I seem to still be having random sharp pain in my scar it feels like its being ripped apart, should I be concerned?

    • Hi Valerie,

      I don’t think you should be overly concerned. I think this is most likely part of the healing of nerves and soft tissue. However, if it bothering you a lot, you may want to see your surgeon so he can evaluate it, and maybe give you a pain medication that helps with this type of pain. I generally give a medication called neurontin. It’s not a narcotic, but can improve these type of symptoms.

  128. Hello Doc,
    I am a healthy 26 year old female. Normally very active. I am 30 hours post op and was sent home 8 hours after surgery. Right after I felt great. I was up and using the restroom on my own 2 hours post op and did ok removing the IV pain relievers and going to a narcotic. The last few hours I have felt SORE. Hit by a bus sore. I need help sitting up, my quads and calves are sore, shoulders and upper and lower back. Everywhere. Is this normal? Was I feeling ‘artificially’ good from the other pain medicine and that is gone? Or is this worthy of a visit to my doc?

    • Hi Rachel,

      I think you are right, it’s probably that you stopped the IV narcotics. If you don’t take the oral narcotics “around the clock” the first couple of days, you may get behind on the pain medication and it’s tough to catch back up. The other thought I had is that you could have a bacteremia…which is some of the bacteria from the appendix got into your bloodstream causing that generalized aching feeling we sometimes get with a bad flu. I think you should probably visit your surgeon if you are not improving with the oral pain medication today.

      Hoep this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  129. Hi Dr Buck,

    I mispoke. I did not mean to suggest that Jennifer had CRPS. I was more curius how often CPRS occurs from lap apps or if one has CRPS, like me, if havingsubesequent surgery such as a lap app is a risk factor for CRPS spread?



  130. Hi Dr. Buck,
    I had a lap appendectomy yesterday and was discharged today. I have a plastic patch over a folded gauze over my navel and two smaller steri-strips over the other two small incisions, which look dry and fine. My concern is the gauze over the navel. It is saturated with fresh blood that seems to pool at the bottom of the plastic patch when I get up to go to the rest room. I was told I could shower tomorrow and remove it in the shower but it seems like there still is blood coming out and accumulating under the patch. Should I try to remove the gauze and put another one on this evening and, if so, what is it called and should I put anything on it? Should I just wait it out and let it keep draining into the saturated gauze for a couple of days? My worry with that is that it won’t dry because it’s so wet and it will become infected. Should I go back to the ER to let someone change it? The doctor’s office said this was normal. Your input would be very much appreciated.
    Thanks so much!

    • Hi Kristin,

      This happens occasionally, and I usually change the bandage for my patients. The catch is, the first 24 hours or so after the surgery, the skin is not really water tight, so you are removing a sterile bandage (even though there is blood’s still sterile). So there is a little risk of infection when taking the bandage off the first 24 hours. However, if you are young, don’t have any medical problems, and are not a smoker, and your appendix was not ruptured, the risk of infection is pretty low. I usually have my patients remove the bandage, and replace it with a clean one for the next 48 hours. Of course, some surgeons have a different opinion about this, so if you are not totally satisfied with my answer…that’s totally OK…in which case I would recommend you speak to your surgeon.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hi Dr. Buck,
        Thank you so much for your input the other day. It helped enormously and the navel area seems to be doing fine now. My concerns on day five after my lap appendectomy involve simple issues like what you advise people to eat or avoid eating, what to do to promote the return of normal bowel function, and your thoughts on resuming daily activities including driving and the return to work (I work in an office but have to walk a bit after parking my car in order to get to my desk.) It still hurts to sit at the table to eat and I don’t know if I should be pushing myself to stretch the muscles or what. Another issue that still seems to be a problem is a fine rash on my torso. I had an allergic reaction to one of the pain medications and had to be given different medications to stop the severe itching all over my body. I have been taking Benadryl but the fine rash still won’t completely go. It also seems to be just on the front of my torso where they swabbed Betadine solution or whatever they used. I stopped taking pain meds three days ago except for Advil. Any thoughts? Thank you in advance for your precious time and help. You have been a blessing to all of us.

  131. Hi, I’m 11 days post op and today I started noticeing pain on my lower right side again. It seems to be sharp and pinching. I don’t have fever or chills. but the pain has gotten more noticable since the morning it is now 7pm. Should I be concerned? Since I’ve been feeling fine up to now my activity level has gone up a bit. I have a toddler and a newborn, but I’ve been careful to not lift my toddler. My bowels have gone back to normal, and today is my first day of my period since the baby was born Oct 23rd. Not sure if thats important for you to know.

    anyway thanks in advance.

    • Hi Grace,

      Well, I’m not exactly sure what is going on with you. I think there could be a couple things. First, it could be that you increased your activity enough to put a strain on your incisions….or on the inside, some of the scar tissue. Second, it could be related to your cycle. Third, it’s always possible you have an unrelated problem like a kidney stone or hernia (although unlikely…still is in the differential). Lastly, it’s possible you are developing an abscess. If you are not having fevers and chills and the pain is tolerable, I would give it about 24 hours with rest. If it increases, or you develop fevers and chills, I recommend seeing your surgeon.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  132. Dr,
    I had my lap appendectomy about 3 weeks ago today. The past two days I’ve had small amounts of puss coming out of a small hole at the bottom of my belly button incision. It doesn’t small bad it just has a yellow tint. I also have pain in the same spot I went to the hospital for. And my lower abdomens feels kinda gassy too. My bowel movements are normal.

    • Hey Edward,

      I think it’s best if you see your surgeon. It’s possible you have an infection in the belly button incision, or a stitch trying to reach the surface. Either way, I recommend you see him/her.

      -Dr. Buck

  133. I had my appendix removed Monday December 3,2012. I was released from the hospital on Wednesday December 5, 2012. I came back to stay with family for the time being as I’m not supposed to drive right after surgery. My concern is I’m tired at night but can’t get more then 2-3 hours of sleep and then be up for about 4-5 hours. What can I do to be comfortable? I was also not given any pain medicine upon leaving the hospital. I’m taking Advil as needed for the pain.

    • Hi Emily,

      Well, I’m not sure if you are sleeping during the day but often after an operation people have their sleep-wake cycles disturbed. If you are sleeping during the day, try to less that as much as possible. If you are not sleeping during the day, try some benadryl or nyquil. I don’t like presecribing “sleep medication” to my patients because it seems to cause more problems…so I generally stick the over the counter meds. If you are not comfortable with that, maybe a trip to your surgeon for some narcotic pain medication.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  134. hello doc. its been 8 days after my surgery on appendix and i feel wabbly when i stand up and i also feel like my whole body is very light and i feel sleepy all the time. i’m also experiencing discomfort when i’m urinating as well as defecating for a short period of time, it feels like my intestines are contracting inside. should i be worried about it?

    -thank you

    • Hi Matt,

      Well I’m not exactly sure what is going on, but I think if you are still having these symtoms in another 24 hours you should probably contact your surgeon. It’s possible you have a urinary tract infection or intra-abdominal abscess….so like I said, give it 24 hours, if it doesn’t improve, see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  135. Hi Dr Buck.
    I had my lap appendectomy 5 weeks ago now, and have recently been experiencing sharp pains and cramps around the right side where my appendix was removed when pressure is applied, but experiencing more on my left side and around my stomach . All 3 wounds have healed really well. I was kept in hospital longer because I was unable to go to the toilet and needed a catheter, I still experience some pain when going to the toilet. I have spoke to my GP and she said this was normal, but it doesn’t feel normal to me. I find it hard to sleep because of pain, usually on my left side. I still feel sick and bloated like I did the first few days after surgery.
    Any help you can give me would be much appreciated, put my mind at rest.
    Thank you!

    • Hi Becky,

      At 5 weeks from the surgery, I don’t think it’s normal either. It could just be some over-exertion causing pain at the incision sites, but I think I would contact your surgeon so he/she can do a physical exam etc. I don’t think it’s an emergency, but because you are having discomfort, I would say the sooner the better.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  136. Hello!

    I found this forum, and really appreciate all your helpful advice! Two quick questions: got a lap appendectomy on 12/06, and came home on 12/08, so it’s been about six days now. Things have been fine thus far, but the Dermabond on my scars has been itching, and is slowly peeling off. Is that normal? Second question, my appetite has returned, and I’m eating mostly normally now, but today I’m super nauseous and a little warm, and one of my scars is irritating me a bit. Is this cause for worry, or should I just give it a little time? The scar that’s irritating me looks fine, no redness, no discharge or foul smells, no additional swelling.

    Thank you!!

    • Hi BB,

      The itching and peeling of the dermabond is normal…no worries there. I’m not sure why you are all of a sudden nauseous. I think I would give it about 24-48 hours to see how things progress. If you develop fevers, chills or increased abdominal pain you should call your surgeon. In that case you may be developing an infection either in the wound or in the abdomen….of course there are other causes, but those are most common.

      Take Care,

      -Dr. Buck

      • Dr.Buck,

        Im having the itching also but also its my whole stomach as well as the incision in my belly button is that normal im a week out of my surgery its driving me crazy the itching.

        • Hi Stephanie,

          It’s probably from the narcotic pain medication you are taking. Did you try some benadryl? This usually helps with the itching….although it may make you sleepy, so just be aware of what you are going to be doing after taking it.

          -Dr. Buck

          • im not taking any pain meds not since day 2 after surgery

          • Hi Stephanie,

            I’m not exactly sure why you are having the itching if you are not taking narcotics. I think if it lasts much longer than 24 more hours you should think about seeing your surgeon.

            -Dr. Buck

  137. Hi Dr Buck,

    My brother (17years old) had a laparoscopic surgery for appendix on Tuesday night (4days now). He is still in the hospital recovering and in some pain. He mentioned he is not able to take deep breaths as his scars and chest hurt. He has not been able to fully urinate, he has got the urge to do so but when he does its not continuous and his bladder is getting full. Also he didn’t manage to poop since Tuesday and it’s really frustrating him. He just puked 3 times today and the doctors just keep giving him pain killers.

    I just want to know if these are common side effects? If so how long do they last? And is it going to take him long to recover?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Alya,

      The pain from the deep breathing is although uncomfortable, it’s normal. I think he is probably having constipation from the pain medication which is also affecting his urinating. I usually give my patients senakot or milk of magnesia to help with constipation, but if he is vomiting it may be time for an enema or two to get him “going”. Unfortunately this happens after surgery with some people more than others.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  138. I have appendix surgery on 7-7-12. I have pain when im laying down and coughing. I have a cold right now. I went the surgeon two days ago and he said that it as good as it going to get but still sending me for ct scan. Theres no pain when i stand up and cough. I brace my thigh up against my stomach on thr right side and it helps with the pain almost 95% percent of the pain

    • It was an open appendectomy by the way.

    • Hi Ryan,

      It sounds like you may have a hernia. It’s possible that it is either a hernia at the incision for the appendectomy, or a right inguinal (groin) hernia. You can see my hernia video explanation here and here. Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  139. I have no obvious bulges or any and my bowel movements are fine. Im alitte bit bigger of a dude. It all pretty much looks the same.

    • Even without an obvious bulge, it can still be a hernia. It’s possible that it’s not…but it still is not ruled out.

      -Dr. Buck

  140. Hi Dr Buck,
    Its been 13 weeks post op and I am still feeling pain on the right side which is still quite sore, and also developed pain on the left side from where one of the scars is. I am 18 years old and I think this is quite long to still have this kind of pain. I have been back to see the surgeon and I was sent for a CT scan but that showed up clear, and the surgeon isnt sure what it is, but thinks im might be nerve pain and sending me for a colonoscopy. I feel as if she doesnt believe the pain is as bad as I tell her even though I know it is because im experiencing it. The pain does be really sore at times and is constantly there, do you have any idea on what it is or what I could do next as I feel im not getting very far and am tired of being in this pain. Its also preventing me from going to school a lot because the pain gets worse when Im carrying a bag etc.
    Thanks for your time,

    • Hi Alex,

      I’m sorry to hear you are having a tough time after your laparoscopic appendectomy. It’s possible it’s nerve pain. If you were my patient I think I would do a trial of Neurontin. It’s a pain medication specifically for nerve pain, without the drowsiness of narcotic pain medication. These are definitely difficult problems to deal with and diagnose, so although it may seem like your surgeon is blowing you off, it may be she is just not sure what is going on….which does happen from time to time. Of course you want to feel comfortable in the mean-time, so that’s why I would try the Neurontin. Let me know how things go.

      -Dr. Buck

  141. Good Evening-

    I am 1 week post op today. Didn’t take a lot of pain meds in the hospital and didn’t take much upon my discharge. my only discomfort was relieved when I had my first good bowel movement 2 days ago. Since that day, i have felt 100% better as if i didn’t have surgery at all. I am still off work, but back to household duties.
    With the Christmas season, family is in town, and not thinking I picked up my baby cousin, about 30 pounds, and carried him until I my husband scooped him from my arms and said ” what are you doing?!? He’s 3x the weight limit your doctor told you.”
    I am now experiencing sharp, stabbing pain at 2 of 3 incision sites ( my belly button is the only one not hurting) when I move… Should I be concerned? Did I “hurt” my insides more than they already are? Should I go to the ER? Or can I wait till my post op appt. on Tuesday?
    Thanks in advance for your counsel.

    • Hi Jaimerz,

      I think you probably strained the incisions. I would give it some rest over the next 48 hours and see how you feel. It should improve. If you get increasing pain, fevers and chills you should see your doctor.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hi doctor,

        My doctor didn’t recommend me any rest. He said is okay to go back to work the first week without any restrictions. My job is physical. Do you think he will decline my request if I want extra weeks off???

        • Hi EP,

          I doubt he will decline a request for rest from a physical labor job for the first 2 weeks. After that, many people have lots of different opinions on the best rest period.

          Take care,

          -Dr. Buck

  142. Hi Dr. Buck,
    This website is very helpful and provided me with more post-op instructions than I was given. I was only told I would feel pretty normal in 2 weeks. Well, I haven’t. It has been 4 weeks since my surgery and I have been trying to get in touch with a physician for the past week. I have had a mild stomach ache since my surgery. The first week home I actually felt pretty good. The second and third week my insides hurt and this past week I feel like I’ve had the flu and my stomach is sore, tender, and constantly feels gasey/bloated. I have a hard time describing the pain…but I would say it is most uncomfortable in the morning, after I eat, and I feel a concentration of pain just under my ribs. I thought at first I had lingering pain because I have been taking care of my 11 month old son full time since 4 days after surgery which obviously requires some lifting and carrying. I’ve tried taking it as easy as possible with an infant but perhaps this is slowing my healing process? My stool is also not back to normal yet. I’m regular but my stool is very soft. Should I keep trying to get an appointment with a physician? I don’t have a fever, sharp pain, increased pain or anything like that. Just a constant stomach pain that feels like gas and affects my appetite due to discomfort (I also haven’t wore jeans due to discomfort as well)

    • Hi Kristin,

      I do think you should see a doctor….your surgeon preferably. I’m not sure what is going on, but you should be feeling better every week, not worse. It’s possible you could have a partial small bowel obstruction, abscess, wound strain or even something unrelated to the appendix such as a gallbladder issue. In any case, I do think it’s best to see a doctor.

      Hope his helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  143. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy over 5 weeks ago and met with my surgeon, he told me that I may begin being active at this time but to take it easy. There is a little bump next to my belly button and my scar feels hard. It is more painfull when I do physical activity, the surgeon said he did not think it is a hernia, he believes it is some tissue from the surgery, what do you think?

    • Hi Marc,

      I think it’s probably scar tissue that is under the skin. It’s still fairly early after the surgery so I’m not surprised that you have pain after physical activity. I would give it a couple more weeks and see if the pain and bump decrease. If the bump gets bigger, or you have sudden increase in pain, you should see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  144. My girlfriend had her appendix removed nearly 8 weeks ago, whilst operating they also fixed an umbilical hernia. Since surgery she has had sharp pain coming and going from the area her appendix used to be and her belly button is still sore.

    She has had 2 ultra sounds and a CT scan which revelealed nothing. She has even seen a gynaecologist . Everyone has told her that she is just taking longer to hear than normal but everything is fine. She is 22 and of normal health although quite petite.

    Any ideas or past experience of these symptoms?


    • Hi Ross,

      Sorry to hear she is having problems. I’m not exactly sure what is going on with her, but it’s possible it is some nerve pain if she has been worked up thoroughly (sounds like she has). If she was my patient I would try some Neurontin for a about one week to see if she improves. This is a medication specifically for nerve pain. This is definitely a difficult scenario to deal with, especially when there is no evidence of anything wrong on the US or CT but she still has significant pain. I’m not sure if I helped you or not, but if you get good answers from the doctors you have seen, or they don’t want to try something else (like neurontin), I would suggest seeing another physician.

      Take care and Merry Christmas,

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks for your help!

        Merry Christmas too.

      • Hi Dr Buck,

        Happy New Year!

        This question left by Ross is in regards to my pain, which I am still in. I went to my general doctor and she too thinks it could be a nerve trapped in the scar tissue.

        I’m now taking Gabapentin (Neurontin) and have been on it now for 1 week 2 days, each week I am to increase the dosage until I’m taking 3 tablets a day. Although the medication is helping relieve the pain, I’m experiencing a lot of the side effects.

        I have contacted my surgeon via his PA and am still waiting for a reply as to what to do next. I can’t stay on Gabapentin forever?! Is it worth getting a referral to a neurophysiologist? Is more surgery my only option to relieve the pain?

        The pain radiates from where my appendix was and runs along the front of my leg and under my crotch, my leg often gets ‘pins and needles’ and has gone ‘dead’ and heavy on occasion. However, I am also experiencing a deep pain in my buttock which runs down the back of my right leg. This is my sciatic nerve though, so I’m not sure why this has also been effected. Do you have any ideas?

        Apologies for the mini essay.
        Kind Regards,

        • Hi Bethan,

          I’m sorry to hear about your unfortunate circumstances. I think I would make sure it is not related to your back first. It’s possible that you had an underlying spine problem which has now surfaced. The buttock pain is certainly from the sciatic nerve, so maybe there is a spine issue that is clouding the diagnosis since you had the surgery and the spine problem at nearly the same time. I can’t say for sure if that’s the problem, but I would definitely look into it. If it’s not the spine, then it is possible you may need another operation to “un-trap” the nerve…although this would be a very rare occurrence.

          Hope this helps some!

          -Dr. Buck

          • Hi Dr Buck,

            I thought you might interested in my case.
            I went back for an investigative laparoscopy to try and find out why I was still in pain.
            They found the appendiceal stump incredibly inflamed, and the stitches undissolved. Turns out I have an allergy to the coating of the stitches (Triclosan). Neither of the surgeons who operated both first time and second time round had ever seen anyone with this allergy.

            I’ve almost completely recovered now, with only a small amount of pain when I exert myself. They also found quite a lot of adhesions and a significant kink in my intestine, but apparently this is all standard post-surgical stuff.

            Thanks for your advice.
            Take care,

  145. Hi Doctor! My daughter is 8 and she had a lap to remove her appendix which didnt burst. This was on Dec.6 Everything was fine she didnt take any medication afterwards but after 10 of her surgery she has develop a terrible rash on her stomach , the doctor told me is an allergic reaction, but it’s been 6 days and she is the sane, she is takibg benadryl and it helps with the itching also cortizone for the bumps but it just comes and goes. Do you think this is related to her surgery. The only thing she is allergic is pennicilin but the doctor knew this and treated her with a dofferent antibiotic when she had the surgery.

    • Hi Sophia,

      I doubt it is related to her surgery….although almost nothing in medicine is 100%. It’s possible she acquired a virus causing the rash. During and shortly after surgery our immune function is decreased, and it’s possible she picked up something at that time. I would suggest seeing her pediatrician to see if he/she has any other thoughts…especially if you are not satisfied with the surgeon’s answer.

      Hope this helps!

      Happy Holidays

      -Dr. Buck

  146. Hi Dr Buck.

    I am a 56 year old male. Had lap. appendectomy Dec. 3rd. Released
    from hospital on the 4th with prescription for Augmentin 875 two times a day for 7 days. Was told that there was one small spot at tip of appendix that was perforated and surgury was difficult due to location of appendix. Normal recovery and no pain or discomfort
    by Dec. 12th. Returned to work Dec. 17th and worked for 3 days. (medium weight lifting) Off work for the holidays until the 27th. Dec 19th pain in lower right abdomen about 2 inches above original appendicitis pain and evening temperature of 100.
    Dec 20th pain and evening temperture of 100.5
    Dec 21st pain and evening temperture of 99.7
    Dec 22nd pain and evening temperture of 99.5
    Dec 23rd morning pain and very little evening pain temperature normal
    Incision sites healed normally after surgery and are fine.
    Total hip replacement 2004.
    If I did have an abdominal abscess is possible for one’s body to dissolve or remove it? Is it possible that the abscess is still there but the body is not attacking it?

    • Hi Tim,

      It seems you are improving since the 20th. I think you can see how it goes over the next couple of days. If it gets worse (fever & pain) I would recommend you go in to see your surgeon. If it continues to improve I think you’re fine. The abscess (if significant) will not really get better on it’s own. The only way an abscess will go away (with antibiotics) is if it’s very small (less than about 1-2cm). Again, if it’s significant, then the body will continue to spike fevers and have pain as the bacteria proliferate.

      Hope this helps!

      Happy Holidays!

      -Dr. Buck

  147. Hi,
    I am a 63 year old fairly fit female. I went in for a laparoscopic hernia op on the 3rd December. When I came round from surgery my doctor came to see me and said that I still had my hernia but he had removed my appendix. Apparently my appendix had fused to my hernia and he decided to leave the hernia until March to stop the risk of infection. I felt great after the op and went home the same night. I took pain killers for the first couple of days but after that only took them now and again. I was going to the toilet with no problems the following day. I am now 3 weeks post op and suddenly my tummy seems more bloated and I get a mild stomach ache after eating. Also if walk for too long I get a dragging which I assume is my hernia. Is the bloating a tummy ache a normal symptom to get after 3 weeks?
    Thanks for your help and Merry Christmas.

  148. Hi,

    I am 27 male, I had laperscopic appendectomy 3 weeks ago after my appendix ruptured and had steady dose of flagyl and amoxicilin. Now I feel a strain and tension in my groin and not sure what to do about it or if anything is wrong. Please advise. thanks

    • Hi John,

      I’m not exactly sure what is going on. It could be you are developing a hernia, or it could be scare tissue that will eventually get better. If you have fevers, chills and increasing pain I think you should see your doctor. If you have a bulge in your groin you should also see your surgeon so he can evaluate you for a hernia. If neither, I think give it a couple of days and see if it improves.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you for your quick response, so you would rule out an infection or any left over bacteria going down to the groin region?

  149. Hi,
    I had an Laproscopic Apendectomy with single port incision located near belly, it’s been around 6 weeks and suddenly i noticed that there were flakes formed near the incision area. I cleaned it with Antiseptic liquid and saw the flakes came out and saw that there was water discharge from the incision and was minute opened. I concerned about this to my surgeon he did something and pressed it and blood was out a bit then he cleaned and applied betadine on it. When i asked him about it he said that it might be some infection round that and will take a look again after 5 days. i am worried about this have u ever got or examined this kind of case before.
    your help will be appreciated a lot…………

    • Hi Jay,

      It’s possible it is an infection, but this many weeks from the surgery I would think it’s more a suture that is trying to reach the surface. It could be a small infection where the suture used to be (if its the dissolving kind). Either way I don’t think you should be too worried, it sounds like it is minor either way.

      -Dr. Buck

  150. Hello Dr. Buck
    I need serious help.
    I had a laproscopic appendectomy done 5 months ago and I’m experiencing pain again..
    My cuts healed nicely, two of them are scars now and the one on my belly button is finally slowly scaring now, too. But since October, I’ve been experiencing pain in my abdomen again. Sometimes it’s on my right side where my appendix used to be, and sometimes it’s right under my ribs on either side. It gets to the point sometimes where I’m in tears from the pain.
    Do you have any opinions on why I could be experiencing this? I’ve been thinking maybe scar tissue or gallbladder?
    I’d reallyy like to get your opinion on my situation.

    • Hi Candice,

      I would think it’s probably not related to your laparoscopic appendectomy. It sound like it may be your gallbladder, but there are certainly other possibilities such as stomach ulcer, bowel obstruction etc. I think if you are in that much pain it’s time to see your doctor and get this sorted out.

      Keep me updated.

      -Dr. Buck

      • I went and saw my surgeon last month, and I had an ultrasound done a week before Christmas. I’m waiting on results right now and might give him a call today because I’m still feeling the pain and it’s actually worrying me.

  151. Hello,

    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy on 15th December and then had a strange reaction with vomiting and diahorrea resulting in a week long stay in hospital. Came home and had a lot of bloating but my bowels were functioning normally. I have been taking pain killers for two weeks now, reducing the dosage to half. The bloating is subsiding but I still have a sharp squeezing pain on my lower right side when I need the toilet or when air seems to be passing through. Its not really bad but uncomfortable. In myself I feel fine. Do you think I should get it checked out with my local GP? Would like your advice. I am a 58 year old female,who is usually fit and healthy.
    Many thanks

    • Hi Di,

      I’m not exactly sure what is going on…but if the pain is intermittent, you are not having fevers & chills, and the abdominal pain is not increasing, it may be OK to give it a couple of days. It’s possible it could be constipation, since you are still taking the narcotics. If thats the case I would try some milk of magnesia to with your bowel movements. If you develop fevers and increasing pain, I would then go in to see your physician.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  152. Hi Dr Buck, God Bless You!
    My question is about belly button, before my operation was clean, and now how I take care the belly button, my operation was 10 days ago, and everything is fine.

    • Hi Marcela,

      You can just wash over the incision with soap and water. Be sure to keep it clean and dry. At this point there is nothing special you need to do except clean it well during your daily shower.

      -Dr. Buck

  153. Wonderful of you to respond to these! A few questions

    1. How long after surgery cn I assume I am not developing an abscesses?
    2. How long after surgery can I assume I am not going to get DVT or pulmonary embolism?
    3. Are the stitches used inside on the 3 incisions usually the kind that eventually disappear or are they permanent?
    4. My appendix had a perforation is there anything else I should be watching for?
    Thank you,

    • Hi Ellen,

      Here are your answers:

      1. At about 3 weeks you can be sure you don’t have an abscess.
      2. This is less distinct. But I think if you are doing well 3 weeks post-op, its very unlikely.
      3. Usually they are absorbable sutures
      4. With a perforation, the abscess development is the most important to watch out for.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  154. dr buck

    i have keyhole surgury monday how long should i rest before i jump on a airoplaine it is just a 2 hour flight ? and what tips can you give me inregards to my diet

    also i work as a plumber and my work is very physical there is alot of heavy digging lifting pulling drilling and pushing
    how long do you think i should rest before i consider jumping back into it ?

    • Hi Ali,

      It’s based on how you feel after. If you are feeling good in 48 hours, I think it’s OK. There is no restriction on your diet after a laparoscopic appendectomy. Unfortunately, you should really take it easy (no lifting over 15lbs) for about 4 weeks to avoid a future hernia at the incision sites.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

      • thank you very much good bless you your the best

  155. I went in yesterday for surgery to fix a hernia. While the Dr. repaired the hernia he noticed my appendix need to be removed, it was enlognated and swollen. I notice everyone saying they stayed n the hospital for a couple days after an appendectomy. i had both things done and adhesions were removed. They snt me home right after I was awake. They sent me home with perocet 5/325. i feel like it is not working. I dont know if i should call the dr sence it is a saturday and you need a written perscription for pain medications…dont knw if I whould call. when I cough I have mucus stuck in my chest becasue I can not cough hard, i get a horrible burning sensation in my surgery areas. I can not sleep longer than 2 hours at a time because of pain waking me up. should I call for a tronger pain medication? my dr. perscribed the same medicine I have been taking the last 3 months before surgery. just to mention.. any advice is apprecoated.

    • Hi Shelby,

      Sorry I’m a day late, but yes I think you should call your Dr. to see if he can change your pain medication. You should be more comfortable than that in the first few days after surgery.

      -Dr. Buck

  156. Hello,
    One week ago I had a laproscopic appendectomy with no complications. After a week I was
    Feeling pretty good. However I needed to catch a flight and was late and ran through a terminal for about 30sec-1minute with a back pack on. Made it on time but felt really out of
    Breathe and naseous after. Upper abdomen on the sides by ribcage feel tender. No unusual pain around belly button that i didn’t have before. Is this a sign
    Of a complication or hernia?

    • Hi Humberto,

      It’s tough to tell if you had any significant problem from that run. I think I would give it a couple days of rest and see if you feel better. If you start to feel worse, make sure you give your Dr. a call. However, I think you will probably improve over the next 48 hours.

      -Dr. Buck

  157. Hi doctor, my father came home this morning from a laparoscopic appendectomy, surgery occurred last night. He is 68 years old, and he is complaining of frequent urges to urinate, but he can’t make much happen. This concerns him. Additionally, he says that there is a bit of blood in his urine, which he’s definitely worried about. Are either of these problems normal? Should we be worried?

    • Hi Jaime,

      Your father probably has urinary retention from the catheter that was in his bladder during the surgery. The blood is probably also from the catheter. There is a possibility he had an injury to the bladder during the surgery as well. Either way, I think it’s best you take him back to the surgeon or hospital he had the surgery at so they can evaluate that. Also, if he is not able to urinate, he will need another catheter placed until the bladder is working again (typically for about 4-5 days).

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  158. Hi Doctor,

    I had a laproscopy for acute appendicitis on 25th Dec 2012. Since the past 2 days I have pain on the right side of my abdomen and the lower abdomen. My bowel movements are not back to normal. Could that be the reason for the pain? But there’s no problem in passing gas. Is there anything i have to worry about? Also my menstrual cycle is due to start in a few days. Could it be why I am experiencing crampy pains in my lower abdomen?

    • Hi AV,

      It’s possible the menstrual cycle is adding to the problem a bit. However, if your bowels are not back to normal I would try to get them regulated first. Try some Milk of Magnesia 30 ml once in the morning and once at night. This usually straightens them out. It may take a couple of days, but it will work. Then make sure you are getting about 20-30 grams of fiber per day in your food. This way you don’t need to continue to take Milk of Mag. I think that should help, if not, let me know.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks a lot, doctor

  159. I had a laparoscopic appendectomy now my abs are uneven!? I headed that uneven abs just come from genetic but they were fine until now. One side is more lifted than the other can another surgery fix this?

    • Hi Jordan,

      I think it’s the swelling fromt the surgery that is making them uneven. I think it will most likely go away by itself in about 3-4 weeks. If they are still uneven at that point, let me know.

      -Dr. Buck

  160. Hi Dr. Buck! This thread is eliminating some of my concerns, but I have a few questions I’m still uneasy about.

    Exactly two weeks ago I had a laparoscopic appendectomy. Everything has been going nicely, however I have the constant urge to urinate. I don’t have pain or burning when I go, and a decent amount of urine comes out each time I go. It’s consistent, and I go every hour. I also sometimes feel like I have chills, but I do not have a fever. Also, I have developed some pain to the left of my bellybutton. It hurts whenever my ab muscles contract. Additionally, I feel as though my lower right side is hurting.
    What do you make of this? Also, is it appropriate to contact my surgeon about this, or should I notify my primary doctor first?


    • Hi Kia,

      Well I can’t exactly say I know what is going on honestly. I think if your symptoms have lasted more than 3 days you should probably contact your surgeon so he/she can evaluate you in person. I think it may be some normal post op pain in the left ad right sides, but I don’t think you should be having fevers at this point. I’m not sure what to make of te frequent urinating without more investigating.

      -Dr Buck

  161. Dear Dr. Buck,

    I am not sure if you will be able to answer my question although i will ask anyway my 7 year old daughter had an open appendectomy 11 days ago. Today she is again complaining of pain over her belly button much like she did when she found out she had appendicitis. i am also noticing her incision looks a bit pushed out and there is bruising and redness around it. i know these could also be symptoms of a normal recovery..i am a bit concerned because of the fact that there was NO suspicion of appendicitis before diagnosis and what we had assumed was a uti (which she has had many of) turned out to be an “early acute appendicitis” based on the fact that her urine was negative for infection BUT later came back positive in the culture.. Her Lab results which i requested prior to the appendectomy showed her CBC Hgb was L at 11.1 Hct L at 31.8 and MCHC H at 34.9 are these levels consistent with an early appendicitis or could there be something more going on? her automated differential results were also off in a few places.
    Thanks for any input you can give.

    • Hi Theresa,

      I think if she is having increasing abdominal pain and fevers she should go in for a visit. Also if ahe is having bloody drainage from her belly button she should go in. At this point the pain should be improving and her incision should not be draining anything. It’s possible she has a wound infection. If she is not having fevers or drainage, it may be that she “over-did” her activity and is just a little sore from too much movement too early….which is a common occurrence. The only labs I look at for appendicitis are the WBCs and the urine (red or white blood cells present or not)…so I wouldn’t pay too much attention to those you have there.

      Hope this helps.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank You

  162. Hello I am 5 days post op… I had a laparoscopy to help treat my endometriosis and all day I have been feeling weak, tired, nauseous, with right side pain and terrible diarrhea any idea what could be causing it? I really don’t want to make a trip to the er if this is normal.. Hope to hear from you soon!

    • Hi Zulma,

      I think if you are having fevers, increasing weakness and abdominal pain, you should go ahead and go in to the ER. It sounds like you may be developing an abscess. Of course there are other things it could be, but the fever, chills and increasing pain is an indication in my book for a visit.

      -Dr. Buck

  163. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I am a 25 year old female who had an laparoscopic removal of an ovarian cyst (so similar surgery, 3 incision points + belly button), and an avid rock climber and runner. I’m 1 week out of surgery right now, and am wondering when I can start climbing again. I was told today that my incisions are not healed enough yet for removal of stitches. What constitutes building up level of activity intensity up to climbing? Also, as for running, i was thinking of going for a run this weekend. I had a hard time with the anesthesia, but since Wednesday, I have started to have energy again. I was thinking of starting up some yoga to maintain/regain core strength? I haven’t found much advice regarding climbing so any pointers are greatly appreciated. At this point, the belly button incision is still sore.

    Thanks so much,

    • Hi Lisa,

      So great to see active people! I think you could probably start LIGHT running at about 2 weeks after a laparoscopic procedure…and that’s taking into account that you are very fit. I would really take it easy that first run though. What often happens is people feel really great because the incisions are very small, then they go out and “over-do-it” that first activity from the surgery. They often don’t THINK they are over-doing anything because what they used to do was so much more. But then the following day they call me and say “Doc…somethings wrong! I broke something!”. It’s just usually the belly button incision is very sore the next day after pushing it too much and they feel really sore all over. So that’s why I recommend taking it easy the first couple times out. As for the rock climbing, we have a lot of folks here in Jackson Hole that are avid rock climbers (I’ve done a few peaks here myself), so I have a good idea how strenuous it can be. I usually recommend a 4 week waiting period for rock climbing. I know it seems like forever, but I also know rock climbing can be anywhere from light to extremely strenuous. It’s that accidental extreme strain on the core you want to avoid. Most people who rock climb on a regular basis are pretty strong people, plenty strong enough to pull out the belly button stitches with one powerful move (at this point it’s usually more instinctual for people like you who are advanced to expert climbers). The one incision you are trying to avoid coming apart is the deep tissue in the belly button. That’s pretty much the only incision you have to worry about with your surgery, but to give you a reference, at 6 months it’s only 60% strength of normal tissue. So at 2 months only 20%…and so on. If you pull those stitches out early, it’s possible you’ll have an umbilical hernia…which does not go away and requires more surgery. Ok, I guess that was pretty long winded, but hopefully you have a better understanding of what you can and can’t (or shouldn’t) do. Glad to see your enthusiasm!!

      Take care, and if you every get up to Wyoming to climb the Tetons, look me up and say hello!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hi Dr. Buck,
        Thank you so much for your detailed response, I really appreciate it. At this point, I am already planning my climbs for summer, and I am planning on going to the Alps for some long sustained granite climbs with similarly long approaches (glacier traverse to hut, 12 pitches, descents, Swiss Alps). I guess I am now wondering how strong is 60% or 70% percent of normal? Strong enough to handle something like that?

        I also do a yearly bouldering trip around Easter to Fontainebleau, France. Thats in 3 months… Should I essentially avoid overhanging roof problems, but slab is essentially ok?

        I ran an marathon last July in Norway, but I favor climbing over running. i guess, basically, I am really active. When i broke my wrist climbing a few years ago, I took up trail running with a cast. The heart of my question is basically at what point would you say my belly button incision site is up to extremely strenuous, moderately strenuous, strenuous?

        If I end up Tetons, I’ll definitely pop by and say hello.

        Thanks again, so much!

        • Hi Lisa,

          I think you will be fine to go on those trips. Fit and active people definitely heal faster once you get back to exercising, so I think at 6 months you will be up to the trip in the Alps. I just like to be cautious the first 4 weeks and then you can go ahead and increase the activity as you feel you can. In three months you may or may not feel up to doing overhangs. I would test it out the first day a little and see what happens. At that point you should not be in danger of opening the incision, but your strength may not be 100% and you may feel some pain that day or the following day, so just be aware of that. In all, I think you will be up to strenuous activity at 2 months and extremely strenuous at 4 months.

          Hope this helps!

          -Dr. Buck

  164. Hi!
    I had my laparoscopic appendectomy in September 2012. I am a very active 25yr old and workout 5 days a week with a very active job (coaching gymnastics). I healed very well following the advice from my Surgeon, and 4 months later I am now finally comfortable with laying on my stomach and no longer feel the tightness and tenderness in my abdomen from normal daily activity! BUT I have 2 questions-
    #1 is it normal that my navel looks completely different? It does NOT look deformed and does not cause me any pain, but its just not “mine”. And I dont mean from the scar.It’s just a different shape.
    Question #2 Being a gymnast for 14 years and working out regularly my entire life Ive always had a very strong core and a very defined abdmoinal muscles. Now it seems no matter what I try I can’t get my abs back, or engage my core in the same manner as I used to, and its been 4 months! Ive done the same intensity of ab routines and higher. I know taking the time off to recover would have an affect, but its been 4 months.Does this have anything to do with the surgery???

    Thanks for your help, I just really need a piece of mind over this whole flat toned abs thing! People tell me I’m crazy for thinking its related to the surgery!

    • Hi Amanda,

      It is normal for the belly button to look different after these surgeries. However, keep in mind the scar tissue is still “re-modeling” up to 2 years. Most of that re-modeling is done in the first year, but subtle changes will happen the second year. As for your second question… patient!!! Haha. It will come back, but it will take some time. Like I said, the scar tissue changes for a long time, and I think it is too soon after the surgery to be too concerned. Also, since you were always active your entire life, this may be some “reconditioning” going on here. It is difficult to get back to your old “ripped self” when you have some downtime….but I’m confident you will get that six pack back! Just don’t give up….and don’t let anyone say you can’t get them back because of the surgery…that’s just crazy.

      Take care!

      -Dr. Buck

      P.S. This “measily” transformation took me like 6 months after getting out of residency!! (Maybe cause I’m old)

      My Awesome Weight Loss Video:)

  165. Dear Dr.
    Delighted to find this web site! I had key hole appendicectomy 3 weeks ago for an inflamed appendix. It did not rupture but the surgeon said it was badly inflamed and I had an ovarian cyst also, which I think he left alone.My question is ….over the past week I have pain/ache in my right lower quadrant (just where my appendix was) and in my right groin. I have no fever, chills and my bowel movements and appetite are back to normal.I am just wondering if it is normal to have this pain still?. I am due back to work next week (physical work, not a desk job)and I am wondering if I will be ok …it will be 4 weeks post op!
    Thanking you, Tracy
    PS I am 39 and in generally good health.

    • Hi Tracy,

      It can be normal to experience some pain here and there for a month or so. I think if it’s constant, or increasingly bothersome you should see your surgeon. Otherwise if it seems to be light and intermitant, I would give it another couple of weeks since you don’t have fevers or any other symptoms.

      • Thank you doctor, it is intermittant and mild, so I will just continue as i am and hopefully it will settle down,
        Thanking you again, Tracy

        • I have periodic intense burning over the right lower quadrant 3 months post appendectomy. I have also had CRPS in my right arm for 5 years from a shoulder surgery gone bad. what could be some possible reasons for the burning?

  166. I had a Appendectomy done 12 days ago. I still have some pain when I get up from a sitting position. I am a College student can I carry books? Whats the most Weight I can carry. Can I climb stairs? Thanks Doctor

    Regards, Scott Harris

    • Hi Scott,

      It’s normal to have that soreness this close to your laparoscopic appendectomy. I think books are OK, but just pay attention to how many you carry and if you get sore afterwards. For the first 3-4 weeks I tell my patients they should not lift much more than about 15-20lbs depending on their current state of health. You can increase your activity in those weeks slowly until you are back to normal lifting/activity at the end.

      -Dr. Buck

  167. hi Dr. Buck i had my laproscopic appendicitis surgery on 9th. I was discharged from hospital on 13th and from then i started eating normal food. Now even after 15 days i had some problem regarding my digestive system. I’m having motions 3 to 4 times a day immediately after eating any food. I consulted a doctor and getting treated for amoebiasis. What should i do to change my condition? Should i change my diet?

    • Hi Saketh,

      It depends on what you are eating now. High sugar diets can add to the diarrhea, so its’ best to eat whole grains, vegetables lean meats such as fish, chicken and lean cuts of beef. This should help if you were eating a lot of sugar before.

      -Dr. Buck

  168. Dear Dr. Buck,
    My son aged 14 years has undegone Laparoscopic Appendectomy on 16th dec 2012. he has lately started complaining of stomach ache at the same spot and feels drained out. Is it very noprmal post procedure? He has taken full rest for 4 weeks and has started going to school from 14th January 2013. He seems to be tired very quickly. Please advice. Thanks Namita

    • H Namita,

      I’m not really sure what is going on, but this is not really normal and I think it’s a good idea to take him into see his surgeon. He should be feeling much better by now.

      -Dr. Buck

  169. 36 hours ago I had lap appendectomy for early appendicitis. First 24 hours I was in a fair amounts pain but took it easy and everything was okay. When I went to urinate at around 24 hours post-surgery I noticed a growing lump underneath the most inferior incision, close to the size of a golf ball.. I notified the surgeon and he told me to first lay on my back and gently massage the area down and then to get a towel and place it over the site and belt it on there. That seemed to do the trick. Every time I urinate the same thing happens and it’s starting to freak me out. I’m terrified at the thought of having a bowel movement, which hasn’t happened yet. Is the swelling normal? Am I going to end up with a hernia?

    • Hi Christopher,

      Well it does sound like you have a hernia. If you are not out of the hospital yet, I would ask the surgeon directly if it is a hernia. If it is, honestly it sounds like the best solution would be to get it fixed before you leave. I think it will only get worse. ( and by that I mean the bulge, for many people they cause no pain). If it was me, I would want to get it fixed before I leave the hospital, otherwise you will have to get another surgery down the road with another few weeks of recovery.

      Hope that helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • I went home following the procedure. The Dr called me this morning and asked to see pictures. After he saw them he says there’s nothing to worry about just bed rest, make an appt for two weeks. When I asked him what it was he said it was simply inflammation, scar tissue, a little bit of blood and is normal. I’m still freaked out. He said that since there was no blood in my urine that I’m okay.

        • It is possible that it’s a hematoma (collection of blood). In that case it will take a few weeks to go away. Unfortunately since I can’t examine you myself I can’t tell you exactly what it is, but if your surgeon thinks it’s a hematoma, I would trust him on that and not get too worried about having any problems in the future. Hematomas resolve on their own over time.

          -Dr. Buck

  170. hello dr Buck, I had my appendix removed 8 weeks ago now. 2 weeks ago I had to go hospital while in spain spain with serve pain where my scar is. I wasn’t heavy lifting, swimming e.t.c as was told by the doctor to be careful. I came home and the my GP has said its an infection i’m 5 days into the antibiotics and still getting discomfort and some pain. But started vomitting yesturday. What could this be?

    Thanks very much

    • Also the scar is quite hard just add in but it is not hot

    • Hi Charlotte,

      You could have developed an abscess after your laparoscopic appendectomy. This is when there is a collection of bacteria walled off by your body. An abscess is difficult to cure with antibiotics alone, and if they are much larger than a couple centimeters will require an incision and drainage procedure (usually under local anesthesia). I think if it’s not getting better, you should call your physician back and ask to be seen again.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks for the quick reply and thank you for your help

  171. .hi. im kind of worried please help . I had my appendix removed about two years.ago just a few days ago i notice that the inside of my belly button is pussing i tried cleaning inside but every since surgery im scared to even poke my belly button. Is this normal?

    • Hi Joselin,

      I’m not sure if this is related to your appendectomy, but I think you should see your doctor anyway. You could have an infection in your belly button which is not too uncommon. It’s possible you just need some antibiotics to clear it up.

      -Dr. Buck

  172. Dear Doctor Buck
    I had my laparoscopic appendectomy on january 8th, I thought everything went well and I thought I was healing quite nicely (I am a 20 year old female and I did do a week of antibiotics after the surgery). I noticed some pain yesterday around my lower abdomen, I also feel a bit bloated. It is tender if I push on it. It feels like my abdominal wall hurts when I urinate, like real bad. I had 3 bowel movements in the evening yesterday (which is unusual as I normally go once or twice a day) and they were quite painful, again I think on my abdominal wall. Also it randomly gets quite sore and then I pass gas. I’m not sure if maybe I pulled a muscle or not and I don’t know if I should see a doctor.
    Thank You

    • Hi Melissa,

      There are a couple things I think could be happening. First, you could have “over-done” your activity a little too early. That results in painful a abdominal wall the following couple of days after an increase in activity. Second, you may have developed a urinary tract infection recently. Third, although it’s a little far out from your surgery to be developing an infection in your abdomen where the appendix used to live, I suppose there is a small chance that could happen also. It’s probably best to go in and see your surgeon, as if you have an infection you may just need a course of antibiotics to clear it up.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  173. I had a lap appendectomy in August 2012. About 2 weeks ago I noticed some swelling behind my navel. It appears bruised at times too. There is no pain just swelling and light bruising. Any thoughts?

    • Hi Jeff,

      It’s possible you either had a hematoma (small blood collection) that is now coming to the surface, or you are developing a small infection in your navel. I think if it is not painful, and it does not get red or start draining fluid I would assume it’s a hematoma and it will go away on it’s own. If you develop increasing pain, fevers or drainage, you should go in to see your doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

  174. I had lap app on Jan 4 2013. SInce then, I’ve had a continued sensation of fullness, not like Thanksgiving dinner fullness or bloating, but rather NO interest in eating. For about two weeks prior to my surgery, I was feeling the dull pain in my lower right abdomen and rather nauseted (thought it was stomach virus, turned out it was retroceal so I don’t know how long I was actually suffering with it and thus no sharp pains) but now 3 weeks post surgery, I’m healing fine but I just have no hunger — This is highly unusual for me as I used to eat a little bit every few hours (very healthy eater) but now I have to force myself to eat something despite no hungry feelings. Since Dec 7, my weight’s gone from 130 to 118 (I’m 5’2″ 49 year old woman). Should I be concerned?

    • Hi Mitzi,

      I would think you would be getting back to normal eating after a couple of weeks from the surgery. I’m not exactly sure what is going on, but in my opinion you should be feeling almost normal now. I think if it goes on for another few days (4 weeks total) you should ask to see your doctor. Of course if you are having fevers, chills and increasing pain you should go right away.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks for responding. I appreciate your time.

  175. Hello,

    I had my laparoscopic appendectomy on january 7th 2013 and today I was looking at the incision where they pulled it out which is the largest of the three they have all healed good except today i have like a 1 or 2cm string like thing that is sticking out of it…they told me my stitches were inside and would dissolve. the string like thing looks almost like dental floss…i pulled really hard on it and nothing happens it doesnt get longer and it never came out so i just put a bandaid on it so i would keep from picking at it. What do you think it is? I’m so confused…. and don’t know what to do HELP I’m getting worried because I can’t find anything online about it

    • Hi Devlynn

      This is the suture that is on the inside. They take about 4-6 weeks to dissolve completely. I would either go back to the surgeon and have him/her cut it short with sterile scissors. It most likely will not cause you any problems if you leave the bandaid and let it dissolve, but you’ve still got a little time to go, so if it’s really bothering you, you should go back to the office and have them snip it short.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  176. Hi dr buck. Thank you for answering my questions a few days ago. I wanted to follow up with what I have found out in the meantime because I am still suffering a low quality of life.

    I went to the ER for fever 2 days ago and a surgical resident examined me and spoke with the attending. I was told that I have a large hematoma. My Hgb went from 15.6 to 11. They didn’t give me a scan or anything and sent me home. Since that time I have had 100.6-101.4 F fever almost constantly, constant nausea and horrible diarrhea (from the strong antibiotics I have to assume). I’ve been trying to contact my surgeon for some sort of anti-nausea medicine and maybe some answers to how long this will go on to no avail.

    How worried should I be about a large abdominal wall hematoma? It’s comstantly painful and very tender to the touch in a wide area. Thank you for all your time.

    • Hi Christopher,

      If you are having fevers and increasing pain, I suggest you go back to either your family physician or a different ER. It’s possible your hematoma could become infected and then that would be a problem. You should not have nausea or diarrhea if it was simple uncomplicated hematoma. It think it’s best to be re-evaluated by a different surgeon or doctor. Also, are you still on anti-biotics? If so, they must have thought it was possibly infected and put you on them. If that’s true, and you are getting worse, its time to see someone.

      -Dr. Buck

  177. I had an emergency laparoscopic appendectomy 2 weeks ago today. I am going away on vacation and although I have had no side effects post-op and my incisions are healed (steri-strips have been removed) I am worried about doing ‘normal’ things. My doctor has advised to do activities as tolerated. I am worried about that having my bikini area wax pre-vacation or having sex again for the first time post surgery will effect the healed incisions. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

    • Hi Elizabeth,

      The bikini wax should be OK. I think if you let them know the incision is new, and to be gentle with it, it will be fine. Alternatively you could just not have the area waxed about 2 millimeters around the incision. Sex is the same as any other activity. The first time back after a surgery you want to take it easy and see how things go. If it is too much discomfort, you may want to give it a little more time (about 2-3 days) before trying again. Just as long as you don’t continue activities that are causing a lot of discomfort, you should be fine.

      One thing I will mention is the sun. New incisions are very prone to being sunburned, so make sure you keep some sunblock on those incisions to protect them!

      Have fun!

      -Dr. Buck

  178. Haven’t eaten anything since Monday. Had my appendectomy Tuesday. I consumed only clear liquids until Thursday. Was given a magnesium laxative and released and began eating normal foods Thursday. The laxative induced chronic watery diarrhea and My surgeon is still concerned that I have had not had a solid bowel movement. I feel better and still have slight watery diarrhea, But my surgeon’s concern worries me. Is it normal to still not have the urge to have a poop? I do not have a fever feel nauseous and I’m not vomiting. From what I’ve read online my status seems normal. Can you tell me when I should contact the doctor by if I still have not had a solid movement. Thanks

    • Hi Jason,

      I think this is normal. I think over the next few days (4 or so) most of this should improve to almost normal. Sometimes it takes a bit longer, but as long as you are feeling OK, and you are improving, I wouldn’t be to worried. If in 1 week from the surgery you still have not had a bowel movement and you are beginning to feel bloated, then I would contact him. I think his concern is that people who have a post-op infection often have difficulty moving their bowels. But as long as you are not having fevers, chills and increasing abdominal pain and bloating, you should not worry too much.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hey Doc, to be honest I have been bloated since surgery. I also have a hot burning pain to the lower left of my belly button. It hurts to lay on that side and kills to cough. He has me on Percocet which I know lends to constipation so I was gonna take some fiber supplements. Should i take a mild laxative or just wait until Monday to call if still no solid bm? Thanks for you help.

  179. Hi Dr. Buck!!
    After my surgery my surgeon informed me that he didn’t get it all because it was in a weird place and he didn’t want to bother my bowel. He got what he could witch Is most of it. Do you think ill have any trouble in the future with this?

    • Hi Justin,

      If the appendix is not totally removed, it is possible to have appendicitis again. It’s a pretty low chance, but it is possible. I wouldn’t worry about it too much, but if you develop symptoms like you did before, it’s good to know so you can alert your doctors that you may in fact have appendicitis again.

      -Dr. Buck

  180. Hello Doc,
    I got operated for appendicitis (laproscopy) on August, i started to train weights gradually after 2 months every thing was fine, last week after having sex prior to my gym session, i went to gym and did bucket squats with weights, at heavy weight suddenly i felt a pain in my both testicles like it was twisted, after that i am having a pain in my lower right abdomen and i feel a bit constipated, is it a hernia or some thing serious ?? regards Abi..

    • Hi Abi,

      It does sound like you may have an “inguinal” or groin hernia. I think it would be best to see a doctor so he/she can examine you for a diagnosis. The good news is that I don’t think this is related to your appendix surgery.

      -Dr. Buck

  181. Halo Doctor,
    My daughter , 15 year old got operated for appendicitis (Laparoscopy) in Nov , two months back, now she is having a dull pain (Though tolerable) in lower abdominal area with with nausea & hunger pangs.. what are these indicate? please help.

    • Hi Prashanta,

      I’m not exactly sure why she is having these pains. It’s possible she could have some scar tissue in that area which is bothering her. Sometimes this goes away on it’s own over time. However, it could be related to another issue, so I would recommend she sees a physician to determine if it’s related to the appendix surgery or not.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  182. Hi Dr Buck,

    I had my lap done on 2nd of feb. I am recovering fine. My surgeon has advised me to do all the normal activities and also said i can even run. But after going through your site i have a doubt if i can do so as you advise min rest of 3-4 weeks. I have to return to work on 7th feb that includes me driving to office. Is it fine to do so? Also I saw today that my right most incision is open and had no staple or stitches, how much time will it take to recover as the surgeon has not advised any ointment to apply on it except medicines.

    • Hi Nish,

      Everyone is a little different, so in general I say about 3-4 weeks. My younger/healthier patients I say around 2-3 weeks, so that’s probably why your surgeon told you that. It’s totally fine to drive to work at this time as long as you are not in a lot of discomfort. They incision will probably close in about 1 week.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  183. Dr. Buck,

    Great to have known of this site! I had a lap app about 3 weeks ago. I am 22, fairly healthy, never been in the hospital before, until this problem came. When I was discharged, while I was doing dressing changes, I noticed slight swelling underneath both of my incisions, one in the navel, and one in the stomach area. I ignored it, knowing that this probably is just from surgery. Three weeks up to this date, the swelling on my navel is still there. It is not visible from the outside, but you can feel it when you palpate down where the scar is at. It does not hurt, but when I try to push it, it does feel tender and I feel lightheaded. It does not keep on growing. I am worried it might be a hernia. I will see my surgeon about 11 days from now to evaluate. Meanwhile, your opinion would be greatly appreciated.

    • Hi Benedict,

      It’s possible it’s just swelling from the surgery. The swelling sometimes take up to 2 months to completely resolve. I think if you are feeling OK and it’s not bothering you, it’s OK to wait to see your surgeon about it. My guess is that it will be OK without any intervention.

      -Dr. Buck

  184. So i had a laproscopic appendectomy on 12/25/2012 and for the most part I’ve been feeling fine. I recovered extremely well and the nurses told me that they were extremely impressed. but lately there’s been a pain at my waistline (around the general area where the incision below the belly button was made) and its not exctly on my scar, but around that area. if i imagine a trail in which the tubes would have passed, parallel to my waistline, then that’s the area where it hurts, with about a 3 inch radius from where the actual scar is. as for the incision place, its purple and there’s an indentation there that is circle shaped and is starting to look a little white. im not sure what it is, i dont think it’s infected, but im thinking about whether i should tell my parents or not (i turned 15 a couple weeks before my surgery)

    thank you so much
    , Ryan

    • Hi Ryan,

      Sounds like you are healing pretty well. I doubt it’s an infection. Infections generally are seen within the first couple of weeks. However, it could be a suture under the skin trying to “make it’s way out”. Sometimes I see this happen around 1-2 months after the surgery. I think it’s OK to show your parents. You may have to wait a week or so until you can see the suture come through the skin and then your doctor can cut it out. Generally these sutures dissolve on their own, but sometimes they reach the surface of the skin before they have a chance to dissolve.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  185. HELLO Dr. BUCK. I have a concern about a year ago I had a lap due to having a dmroid. On my left ovary and was removed as well. Right now I’m feelingsome dull pain on top of my insertion and it feels a bit swollen and when I press on it, it really hurts should I be worried and go to the hospital or make an appt with my gyn..

    • Hi Linsie,

      Honestly I’m not really sure what you are feeling. It’s tough to tell because after 1 year, it could be related to the surgery, or a totally different issue. I think it’s probably best to see your GYN so he/she can determine if this is related to the surgery or not. Sorry I’m not much help in this scenario!

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  186. can i get complete relief after appendectomy.

    • Hi Brajesh,

      Yes, your pain should be totally gone after your surgery. It will take some time because you will have some pain associated with the surgery sites, but after about 1-2 weeks you will hardly notice it anymore.

      -Dr. Buck

  187. I am 3 days post op from laparoscopic,surgery to remove endrimetriosis i feel generally unwell all my joints are aching I.e wrists ankles my legs are just aching badly I have no appetite at all and not opening my bladder as well as I should be what do you suggest

    • Hi Emma,

      I would get in to see your doctor as soon as you can. It’s possible you are developing an infection. At the beginning of an infection you feel the muscle and joint aches and pains. If you have the ability to take your temperature, blood pressure and heart rate I would do that too. If your temp, blood pressure or heart rate is not in the normal range (Normal =Temp under 100.4, BP between 100/60-130/90, heart rate under 100), then I think you should go to the emergency room. The quicker it is diagnosed, the easier the treatment.

      -Dr. Buck

  188. I had a lap Appy 8/15/12 there is this one incision site on the left where the surgeon went through and across for some reason that just doesn’t seem to be healing.. Its been almost 7 months and it feels like a deep bruise that just wont stop hurting.. vary tender and kinda worrying me.. Don’t wanna go in if its nothing just get a fat bill.. but was curious what advice you might have.. Is it normal to have pain this long after surgery?

    • Hi Vanessa,

      It’s definitely not normal to have pain this far out from the surgery. It’s possible you have an abscess from a suture, or a hernia there. Either way, I think you should see at least your primary care provider.

      -Dr. Buck

  189. Hi, I had a lap appendectomy 2 weeks ago. Im doing my personal trainers course at the moment which requires mild-high amount of physical activity. How long would you recommend to take off until I go back? Im normally in the gym 7 days a week and not being able to study or go to the gym is killing me! Its my life!

    • Hi Jake,

      I tell my patients who are in your type of shape that they can go back to the gym in 2 weeks. I do however ask them to be cautious the first week back. Ease into it the first couple of days. Pay attention to those incisions the day AFTER your first workout back. If they are really sore…you know it you did too much…if they feel fine, you can continue.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

      • I forgot to add, when I pee towards the end I get mild pain in my lower abdomen about an inch above the lowest incision, should I be worried and go see me GP?

  190. Dr. Buck,

    Great website. I had a lap appendectomy 11 days ago and today woke to a burning pain sensation on my lower left side when I twist or turn (for example, getting into a car). Do I need to go get it checked out, or can i wait and see how it is the next few days? Thanks!

    • Hi Peter,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you so late, I have been out of internet for the last few days. Anyways, I hope you are feeling better by now, it sounds like you had some pain related to the incision and I think that will subside with time.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  191. Dr. buck…..I am at day 6 from a lap appendectomy. The incision on my belly button and above the pubic bone are doing quite well and are pain free but the left abdomen incision is causing me trouble with a very sharp pain for a second or two when I move or turn over assuming these are the internal sutures? How long will that last? Also, I was told the surgeon corrected a hernia at the same time but I am unaware of the hernia location and if that could be related.

    Thank you


    • Hi Danny,

      I think this will subside with time. Sounds like it may be the suture that is causing the problem, but this should get better over the next week or so. More than likely you had a hernia in the umbilical area…that’s pretty common to have and correct during this operation.

      -Dr. Buc

  192. Hi
    I had laparoscopic appendectomy on 13/02 (it’s now 18/02), I’m taking 2 types antibiotics (metronidazole and erthryomycin) and taking paracetamol and ibrurpofen for the pain, I was using tramadol until yesterday when it ran out. since yesterday 17-02 the pain has been increasing behind my belly button to the extent of being doubled over in pain for over an hour crying it was so bad. no temperature and wounds seem clean enough (appt on 20/02 to get them checked). however I am extremely bloated, feeling full after a couple of bites of food, and struggling with bowel movements. it hurts to even try to go, and I haven’t been able to go since the surgery. is this normal? also struggling to urinate, it hurts alot and takes me ages to go, it’s always just a trickle and I need to do this every hour or so due to pain telling me I am ‘desperate’ to go. right now its 3am and I can’t find a comfortable position to lie or sit in to get to sleep.
    am I just worrying overly?

    thanks in advance. any help is amazing.

    • Hi Kyla,

      Sorry to hear you are having such a tough time! It sound like when you stopped the tramadol these problems increased. I think it’s a combination of stopping the pain medication and being significantly constipated. I think it’s smart to see your doctor to make sure this diagnosis is correct and then he can give you a prescription for laxatives and stool softeners to get you started again, and also better pain control.

      Hope this help!

      -Dr. Buck

  193. I just had a lap appy on Fri. 2-15 around 10pm. I am feeling really good besides some mild abdominal pain with a moderate amount of swelling that seems to be decreasing every day, but it is the back pain that is bothering me mostly. I expected to feel some back pain in my upper back between my shoulder blades like I did after an exploratory laparoscopy in 06′, but this is my lower back & it seems to feel muscular in nature. I have been sleeping on my back only b/c it’s too uncomfortable to sleep on my sides right now & thought maybe that was the problem? I also have some back pain at times anyway, mostly lumbar, which is chronic. It’s a lot worse right now though. Could I have over used these muscles trying to compensate for not using my abdominal muscles or do you think there might be something else going on? Thank you very much!

    • Hi Marie,

      It’s possible your normal back pain has increased because of the stress of the surgery…it could have been the positioning during the surgery as well. As long as you don’t have increasing abdominal pain, fevers and chills, it’s most likely one of these. I think it’s best to see your doctor to sort out what is the best pain medication regimen for you since you had some pre-existing pain before the surgery. Proper pain control after surgery is difficult in patients with pre-existing pain.

      -Dr. Buck

  194. Hie doc

    I had my laproscopic done abt a month ago and ive seem to be recovering fine and have been taking it easy but a week ago ive had an acute pain in my lower right back side that wont go away. It seems to also be going through to my lower abdorman aswell. Should i be worried coz its been almost 2wks with this pain. Also i do housekeeping do u think its best to go bak to work worried abt the incision i have in my belly button considering how heavy my work can be

    • Hi Kuda,

      You should not be having pain this far from your surgery. I think it’s best you are evaluated by your surgeon to determine if something else is going on. Sometimes it can be just muscle spasms from the stress of surgery, or an underlying condition that you did not know about prior to surgery. Either way, I think it’s smart to see your surgeon to be evaluated in person.

      -Dr. Buc

    • Hi Kuda,

      You should not be having pain this far from your surgery. I think it’s best you are evaluated by your surgeon to determine if something else is going on. Sometimes it can be just muscle spasms from the stress of surgery, or an underlying condition that you did not know about prior to surgery. Either way, I think it’s smart to see your surgeon to be evaluated in person.

      -Dr. Buck

  195. Hi I had my lap appendix surgery about 12 days ago now I feel good no nausea,vomiting or fevers I still feel a little pain in my wounds and in my lower abdomen and what most concerns me is am still bleeding from my bellybuttom incision is just a little but every day I notice when I change my gauze pads.

    • Hi Miguel,

      I think I would give it a couple of more days to see what happens. Sounds like you are doing pretty good and have normal post-operative pain. I would pay attention to the bleeding, because it could be a sign of infection in the belly button incision…but if you are not having fevers and increasing pain there, I would give it 2 more days. Hopefully you will be seeing your surgeon at the 2 week mark…if not, I would suggest seeing a doctor at that time.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Ok thank you very much dr buck, am going to see the dr this coming Monday hopefully everything is ok.

  196. i had a laparoscopic surgery one month back soon after ten days of surgery one of the wound on the bully blood and purse started coming out so they took me to the emergency room there they opened the wound and dressed with a bandage and did it for a week till it gets drained the other following week the doctor gave me some antibiotics ointment to apply for one week so that wound would get healed and it got also but now the condition is the bell is little sollowen and red in color towards down side of the wound i don’t feel much pain and i dont take any medications. can any one help me

    • Hi Anthony,

      I think if your wound is getting more red and swollen you should return to your physician/surgeon. You may be developing another infection.

      -Dr. Buck

  197. What a helpful forum, thank you Dr. Buck. I had a laparascopic appendectomy exactly a month ago (following years of a “rumbling appendix”, CT scan revealed appendicitis, initial treatment with IV ABs, but didn’t work). A couple of weeks after the op it was quite painful and an X-ray showed constipation. Another CT scan showed a small abscess but too small to drain, treated with ABs. Blood count then back to normal. Now approx. one week after finishing ABs the pain is recurring at the site of the appendix, worse with walking. I am 50 yo m and usually pretty fit. I am seeing the surgeon again but any additional advice most welcome. I am hoping to go on an overseas trip for work in a couple of months.

    • Hi David,

      Sounds like that small abscess may be increasing in size. Sometimes when you treat a small abscess with antibiotics it will get better until you stop the antibiotics and then it comes back. Those sizes are tough to deal with sometimes because the antibiotics don’t quite work, and they are sometimes difficult to drain by CT guided drainage. I think I would probably leave you off of the antibiotics and see if the abscess is big enough to drain at this point. Keep me in the loop.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you very much, Dr.Buck. Well, ultrasound was a bit inconclusive — it showed there is still an abscess but couldn’t show how big it is (another CT would probably have shown more). I am back on two different kinds of ABs. I do hope they work. I am not keen on more surgery if at all possible!

        • Hi again, the latest is they will aspirate it using Ultrasound, as you suggested. Is that an easy procedure? It will definitely be good to get it cleared up!

          Antibiotics mean no alcohol — which is good; I’ve lost 10lbs!

          By the way, I am in New Zealand. It does now seem antibiotics are favored for chronic appendicitis (several international studies). Trouble is, they don’t always work and an operation becomes essential, as happened to me!

  198. Hey doc I had my appendix removed 11 days ago I started getting pressure, pain an now burning in my stomach 2 days ago. Saw the surgeon yesterday and he said everything looked good and the stomach felt sift no hard spots which I guess is good. My question is is it still normal to have pain 2 weeks post op? I have no fever, no chills, I’m eating going to the bathroom and passing gas fine. But can feel my stomach rumpling from time to time can it still be gas pockets?

    • Hi Vinny,

      It shouldn’t be gas this far from the surgery, but sometimes it does take up to a month to get back to “normal” in regards to the stomach and bowels. I would try to take some tums to see if that helps. If so, it may be some irritation of the lining of the stomach, or even an ulcer after the operation. If the tums help, I would talk to your family physician and tell him/her the story. Most likely they will put you on an acid blocker for a bit. You may also have esophagitis or gastritis from the thrush going down into the esophagus or stomach. I think overall you should see your family doc and tell him/her about everything going on. The thrush should be treated with appropriate medications (nystatin or ketoconazole depending on the situation)if that is the main issue.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  199. Sorry I forgot to mention a few days ago my tongue also turned pretty white could it be thrush from all the antibiotics I was given in hospital and what can I do for it I read eating a lit of yogurt might help

  200. Hi, I had dull cramping pains for three days, and thought it was just my period coming on (periods are currently erratic since I stopped breast feeding my baby in December) but it didn’t show up and on the 4th day my tummy swelled up like I was 5 months pregnant and became very sore on the right side – even to the touch. I went to see my doctor that day and he examined my tummy measuring from my hip bone towards my belly button it was very painful! He decided I had an inflamed appendix and sent me home with anti spasmodic drugs and antibiotics and told me if my temperature spiked to seek further medical advice. That night after only one dose I began to shiver uncontrollably even my teeth were chattering I was achy all over including my head and back. This lasted all night, I tossed and turned all night in bed but with some painkillers I managed to get some sleep. In the morning the bed sheets were soaked in sweat (sorry tmi) the next day the pain had lessened but my stomach remained very swollen and quite hard, that day passed with limited pain but intense nausea, and I hardly slept that night as my stomach was so swollen I was very uncomfortable. Today I have had a little pain on the right and some nausea and my belly is still huge, but tonight my tummy is grumbling and groaning ( not hunger) it seems to be coming from the point if pain. It’s very unusual. I have continued with the prescribed medication and during the last 4days I’ve not had any large amounts of food as even small snacks make me uncomfortably full and I’m also worried about eating to much incase I need to go to hospital and have my appendix removed. ( I have not been sick or been too the loo in last 3 days and having a wee is a little pressured) so sorry for this super long post, but I just don’t know what to do. I look forward to your response. (Oh yeah and I’m in the uk ) thanks again:-)

    • Hi Laura,

      I think you need to have your appendix removed. I recommend you go to the hospital as soon as possible. I’m not sure why your doctor sent you home on antibiotics for appendicitis…it’s really not the preferred treatment in the US. Hope you have everything taken care of and it goes smooth. Keep me updated!

      -Dr. Buck

  201. My sister had an emergency lap appendectomy feb 12th. She came home one week ago. She’s had one small bowel movement with a bit of blood, but no others. Today, after probably exerting herself yesterday, she vomited quite a bit this morning. I’m afraid to give her much.. I’m sure it was too much fluid she drank.. But I wonder if its still okay to have had no significant bms at this point? With nausea and that one vomit spell I’m unsure of giving stool softener or milk of magnesia. No fever or swelling or anything. She is a bit lethargic, but I think that’s due to lack of protein.

    • Hi Michael,

      Well it could be that she is constipated from the narcotics, however, I think I would be concerned she has a post-operative infection. Often the sign of post-op infection is the bowels kind of get “paralyzed”. The nausea, vomiting, lethargy and timing from the operation tell me I would want to make sure she didn’t have another problem before giving her stool softeners. I think it’s probably wise to take her in to see a physician today.

      Keep me updated.

      -Dr. Buck

  202. Lap app 8 days ago and I spike a low grade fever occasionally and no energy. Is this normal? Never had surgery before. Don’t feel bad or hurt anywhere.

    • Hi Alan,

      Not exactly normal. If it continues over the next 24-48 hours you should call your physician. The main culprits are abscess (infection), blood clot, pneumonia or urinary tract infection. Any other symptoms should warrant a trip to your doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

  203. Just wanted to say thank you

  204. Hi again Dr. Buck, Just following up from my post above (small abscess about one month after laparascopic appendectomy). Initially treated with ABs. I seemed to get better then felt worse. More ABs followed by ultrasound which showed small abscess still there but sonographer unable to determine size. Then surgeon advised they would possibly aspirate or drain the infection. Three days later another CT scan showed no infection. Which is good except I am still pretty sore and can’t walk very far. Radiologist said this could be because of inflammation. Any ideas? Should it just get better. I am still on ABs for a few days and I am also trying Ibuprofen and Paracetamol. Many thanks again, David

  205. Dr. Buck,
    Thank you for answering questions, it’s so helpful. I read thru the whole thread and did not see anyone with my issue, so here goes.
    Im 27, female, & I had a lapro appendectomy on dec 16 (appendix had not ruptured). Maybe 5-7 days post op I woke with horrible all over stabbing pain in my abdomen, and it kept me up all night. Went to doc in the am, and they did blood work to check for infection. It came back normal. They gave me no indication of what caused the pain.

    Since then, this stabbing pain has happened three times. Once in the middle of the night about a month ago, which slowly went away a couple hours later. The third occurrence is right now.

    I handle pain well (I’m no wimp) and this hurts really really bad. It’s stabbing pains that move quickly all over the abdomen.

    I thought at first maybe it’s gas pain, but I have no gas. And this has never happened before that first instance following my appendectomy. Any ideas?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Haley,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you so late! I’m really not sure what is going on with you. I’m not certain it is related to your appendectomy. It’s possible you have a different and separate problem from the appendix surgery. If I was your doctor I think I would search for other causes of the pain such as gallbladder disease, pancreatitis, or bowel obstruction. Sorry I’m not much help with this problem! I do think if your surgeon “blows you off”, you should be examined by another doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

  206. hiya, I had my op 4 weeks ago yesterday. I really want to get back to the gym by the end of the healing period. Will I have to take it easy even after the 6 weeks I’ve been told to take it easy I’m mostly interested in cardio, but I do like to really push myself when I go to the gym. Any advice?

    • Hi Lauren,

      I usually tell me young and healthy “gym-goer” patients that after about 2-3 weeks they can ease into their normal activity over the next week. So I think after 6 weeks you should be good to go.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  207. Dr buck,

    I got my appendix out on Thursday night/Friday morning, and the worst pain I’m still having is on my left side of my belly button. I can barely touch it without it feeling pretty bad. Is that because that’s where my incisions are?? Most of the area is still pretty hard as well. I can’t suck in or take deep breaths without pretty bad pain.

    • Hi Vicki,

      Sorry to get back to you so late! Hopefully you have had your issues resolved. It sounds like you may have had an infection in the incisions. Hope everything is better now!

      -Dr. Buck

  208. Dr. Parker, my 17 year old daughter had a single incision laproscopic appendectomy 5 days ago. This evening the clear film bandage began rolling on her stomach, so we removed it. It looks like her belly button is “packed” with gauze that is about quarter size in diameter. We left that alone and just put another gauze pad and waterproof bandage over it. The doctor said we could remove her bandage and to just keep it clean and dry after 5 days, but didn’t say anyting about the packing. There is no discoloration on the packing nor any smell. Is it safe to remove this? Should we remove it? She is slightly sore, had a normal appetite and her bowel movements are close to normal with Colace. She is not taking the RX meds anymore and functions fine with ibuprofen. She is a dancer and has begun to resume her practice with some modification. I don’t want to remove the packing if it might cause problems.

    • Hi Laurie,

      Yes, after about 48-72 hours you can remove the packing.

      -Dr. Buck

  209. Hello Dr. Buck…

    What a great forum! Thanks for all the help you give.

    I am 36, in pretty good health. I had a lap appendectomy on Feb. 17 (2.5 weeks ago) and bounced back pretty quickly. A couple of days ago, however, I did some semi-heavy lifting (30 lb boxes) in preparation for a road trip. Since then, I have been having some abdominal pain… Not severe, but pain nonetheless… comes and goes in different places across my abdomen.

    What has me quite concerned is that it hurts the most after I eat a meal. My appetite is not gone, but is not great. My stomach is upset after eating. Makes me a little burpy and bloated.

    I am on a lengthy road trip, so – obviously – I am not too excited about another hospital visit! :)

    Thanks for your thoughts.

    • Hi Geo,

      Couple possibilities. One is that you just “over did it” with the lifting and the discomfort is making your stomach upset. Second is that you are developing an ulcer or even gastritis (inflammation of the stomach) after the surgery. I think it would be best if it doesn’t go away after about 48 hours to see a physician. Make sure you get some rest in those 48 hours!

      -Dr. Buck

  210. Greetings, I had laparascopic appendectomy on 3/5/2013. I was realesed on on wed the 6th but had to go back to the ER same night because of high fever and vomiting. After I came out of the ER I’ve been feeling very well. But the only thing that is bothering me extreamly is the chronice diarreha. I literarly go to the bathroom 20 to 30 times a day for 4 days now. I am not able to sleep at night,I have lost a lot of weight as well. I’m drinking fluids as recomended but nothing is helping. Do you have any advice of what else to do ? is this normal ?

    • Hi Ali,

      I think you should return to the hospital. That’s definitely not normal and you may have a colon infection that can be dangerous if left untreated. If treated, it can be resolved in a few days.

      -Dr. Buck

      • thanks for you’r advice Dr. But I’m actually feeling like myself again..not 100% yet but well get there !! I appreciate your response.

  211. I had emergency apendectomy on Dec.28, 2012 for ruptured appendix after having been misdiagnosed while in Belize. Took my time recovering and now all is well except I have a strange sensation in my chest. It’s not pain, just strange, almost like bursting bubbles or fluttering, upper left. Absolutely no pain. I notice the sensation most upon lying down. What could this be? Should I worry?

    • Hi Nancy,

      I think it would be wise to visit your physician. It’s possible (depending on your age, activity and other medical problems) that you have developed a heart arrhythmia. There are other possibilities also, but I think it’s best if it is confirmed.

      -Dr. Buck

  212. Hello Dr. Buck. What a helpful website you have! Thank you.

    My daughter, 10 1/2, just had a lap app 1 week ago. So far she is doing great. She has been taking it easy and will continue to do so until our 2 week post-op appt. My question is about getting back into activities. She plays competitive tennis and I’m just wondering when she may be able to play again. I’m assuming there will be an easing into it period? Also, what about running/jogging/jumping rope and arm/shoulder/core exercises? Thank you very much. –Jen

    • Hi Jen,

      I tell most of my patients who are young like her they can start increasing their activity level in about 2 weeks. She can take it easy at first, but at the 3 week mark she probably is going to feel up to playing tennis…but not quite 100%. I suspect she will be 100% in 4-6 weeks. I would say she could start jogging at the 2 week mark and increase from there. Same for the other exercises.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thank you for taking the time to answer my question, Dr. Buck. I appreciate it. -Jen

  213. Dr.Buck,

    I had my appendix removed on Feb 16th…it ruptured while I was waiting for the surgery in the hospital. I was released the next day on antibiotics. Healed fine, and went for a scheduled women’s check up and she found ecoli… She put me on more antibiotics. I just finished the 7day dosage last week. Now I have severe nausea and this horrible feeling in my throat that I need to vomit but I don’t. This starts from the time I wake up to the time I go to sleep… I don’t know what’s going on. I go back to my Ob/GYN to see if the bacteria has gone but this feeling of nausea 24/7 is really killing me. I don’t know what to do. Please help. Thank you

    • Hi Sharetta,

      I’m actually not sure what is going on either. I think the best thing to do would be to go to an internal medicine doctor. That way he is taking into account all of these things that are going on and not just looking at one problem. Surgeon and OBs have a tendency to do that…even though they mean well, sometimes they just look at the things it could be within their specialty.

      Keep me updated,

      -Dr. Buck

  214. Hi Dr Buck,

    I had my appendix out almost 2 weeks ago. No complications during or after surgery and I took one week off and felt great. I had my follow up five days after surgery and I asked him when I can resume my workouts and lifting my nephew who is around 20lbs. He said I could start whenever. So 8 days after surgery I did light cardio, strength and some abs training. Also went back to work, where i am constantly getting in and out of my car. I also began lifting my nephew. Midweek I started to get sore and did not workout since. By end of work week I started to get sharp pains in my left side of abdomen above my incision, right below my rib when i sit or move in certain postions. I am not sure if this due to constant driving and getting in and out of my car all week. Not sure if I tore something with my incision or what. Please advise. Thanks!

    • Hi Rai,

      I think this is probably due to over-activity a little too soon. If you do not have fevers or chills with your increasing abdominal pain, I think you should rest for about 48-72 hours and see how you feel. If you do develop fevers & chills, I think you should see your surgeon.

      Hope this help!

      -Dr. Buck

  215. it’s not often doctors give out advice, FREELY!! THANK YOU for this page/post, I just had a lap app and have the plastic bandages, was wondering what was under em…don’t want to damage anything! THANKS again!


    • Hi Stacie,

      Most of the time there is a little gauze and tape (ster-strips) under the plastic. I tell my patients they can remove everything but the steri-strip about 48 hours after the operation. I like my patients to leave the tape for about 7 days. You should be able to wash the incisions gently with soap and water 48 hours after the surgery.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  216. Hi! It’s been exactly a week since my lap appendectomy, I’m kind of worried because I have massive bruising around my insisions they’re at least the size of my fist and it still really hurts to move, im almost doubled over when I’m walking. The good news is that there is no other drainage, just really bad bruising. Should I be worried? Thanks!

    • Hi Shay,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you late. I think if the bruising is not increasing and the pain has improved since the 28th, then you should be on the right track. If it’s getting worse, definitely see your surgeon,

      -Dr. Buck

  217. Hi Dr. Buck, my fiance had a laparoscopic appendectomy to remove his ruptured appendix on march 24. Today makes 5 days post-op and he his still having a tremendous amount of pain on his right side were his appendix was. He says it hurts to the touch. his pain medication is not relieving his pain. He is still very bloated. What can he do to relieve the pain and gas that is still trapped in his abdomen?

    • Hi Laura,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you late. I think if he’s still having more pain, I would take him into see his surgeon. It’s possible he is developing an infection in his belly where the appendix used to be.

      -Dr. Buck

  218. Hi Dr Buck,

    What a great website!

    I had an appendectomy exactly one week ago today. My appendix was quite gangrenous and necrotic and so i spent an additional few days in hospital after it was removed, to undergo further antibiotic treatment. I believe i’ve recovered quite well so far. I’ve been on oral antibiotics since I left the hospital and have a few days to go. I’ve been put on Panadene Forte for the pain which seems to be working fine. In fact I think i can probably stop taking it within the next couple of days.

    However, there is one thing that is bothering me a little. Ever since the operation i’ve noticed a “heavy” feeling in my heart and chest. In hospital i mentioned to some of the nurses that it felt like my chest was heavy and I theorised it must be pain from my abdomen radiating up to my chest. I was given additional pain medication and i thought it felt a bit better. Since then i notice the feeling is still there. Perhaps because i’m focusing my attention on it, i am more actuely aware of my heart beating and may even be having heart palpitations, though nothing too rapid or enduring. i wouldn’t really go so far as to describe the feeling as painful, but it is worrying me as I know there is a lot of important stuff in my chest (which is probably compounding the problem and making it feel it worse). Do you have any theories about this and do you think i should be worried? I have my post op visit in another week.

    One more question: I teach yoga and Pilates for a living. I am teaching my first class tomorrow post op. I am planning to teach the class without demonstrating much of it at all. However I can’t do this forever and it is much easier to teach a class when i’m able to show participants some of the poses/exercises. How long would you recommend I wait until i can demonstrate things like high plank or abdominal exercises. does it make a difference that i should have a strong core already?

    Thanks in advance,


    • Hi Jacqui,

      I really think you should be evaluated before you go back to work. The heavy feeling in your chest is not normal. I can’t say exactly what it is without evaluating you. I think you should be evaluated by your surgeon, or your primary care doctor first. For extremely active patients, I usually tell them they can go back to exercising lightly in about 7-10 days. Then you can increase the activity as tolerated over the next couple weeks until you are full capacity at 4 weeks. However, like I said, you should be evaluated for these chest symptoms first.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Thanks Dr Buck,

        I am actually back in hospital tonight. The feeling of heaviness in my heart became more of a sharp pain overnight, with greater intensity as I walked around. I decided to visit my local medical centre today and was immediately referred back to the hospital emergency department. I am staying overnight awaiting a VQ scan tomorrow morning. They suspect a possible embolism. Whatever it is i guess i’m in the best place.

        Thanks for your response.

        Also – is it possible to remove my surname from my post above? I’d rather people I know didn’t stumble upon this page if they were to google my name! it’s not a common surname so if you could remove it, that would be appreciated!

        • Glad you went back. Keep me updated. I removed your surname.

          -Dr. Buck

          • Thanks Dr Buck,

            I was discharged from hospital yesterday with the all clear. VQ scan showed no pulmonary embolism (which was apparently what they suspected). Doctors can’t tell me what was causing the chest pain, just that it is nothing life threatening. They suspect it was muscular pain. In any case, the pain has subsided quite a lot in the last 2 days. Feeling much better.

            Thanks again :)

  219. It was a laproscopic appendectomy by the way :)

  220. Good evening. On march 16’i was hospitalized for severe abdominal pain in the lower right side of my belly. It was bellow my belly button and above my hip. At its worst points, it would radiate to my back, down my leg and upto my ribs, all on the right side. After 4 days of morphine and begging for an ultrasound, they found a softball sized mass on my ovary, which had caused torsion (3 full spins) and the mass had attached to my appendix. My appendix was getting ready to rupture. I had a lap surgery to remove the mass, my ovary and my appendix. I was kept in the hospital for over 24 hours after the surgery and sent home.

    During the first week, I experienced a low fever on and off (101.1) and diarrhea, but since have been fine. The surgery was done during the night from the 19th to the 20th. It has been over 11 days and now my abdomen on the left side (bellow my belly button) is so sore that I can’t wear pants or anything at all snug. It hurts to touch or to move. The pain radiates to the right a bit….but is mostly on the left about an inch away from an incision. It will ache, throb and is intensely tender to the touch. I am not running a fever. Is this pain normal for this type of surgery? I had a lap hysterectomy 2 years ago and don’t remember being in this much pain….

    Thank you for any help you an offer.

    • Hi Lorri,

      I think it could be a couple different things. First, it’s possible you have simply had too much activity too fast. That’s pretty common after surgery. Second, it’s possible you are developing an infection in one of your incisions. If it continues to swell, increases in pain and or begins to turn red, you should see your doctor as soon as possible.

      -Dr. Buck

  221. Hi Dr. Buck

    I got my laproscopic appendectomy about a month ago, and I was fine until last night, when I had a light fever and chills. I did not get any sleep the day before, and lifted a pretty heavy luggage. And I was probably underdressed for the weather. I took some tylenol, and woke up feeling better. I was fine until just now, (around 10pm) when I am having chills (but lighter than last night’s) again. I am not experiencing any new or worse pain, I’m feeling the same. There is nothing bulging out near my incision area either. Should I be worried?

    • Hi Tommy,

      Sorry…I was out last week. Sounds like you just put too much strain on your incision. That can cause those symptoms you were experiencing. I’m sure you got thing sorted out by now, but if not let me know.

      -Dr. Buck

  222. Hi Doctor! My husband had his appendix out on Sunday the 31st. He still has not had a bowel movement, its been 5 days now. He is very uncomfortable and is experiencing a fever between 99.5-100.5. I have been giving him a powder laxative that was prescribed to be after we had our daughter once a day since Sunday. I dont know if he should go to the hospital or not?

    • Hi Katlyn,

      Hopefully your husband has cleared up his problem by now. It usually takes about 48 hour or so after you start the laxatives. Hopefully you got things sorted out. Sorry I was out last week.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hello Doc, thank you for this wonderful site!! Had lap app 5 days ago today. I was told leaking appendix but not ruptured. Incisions are looking great, pain is going away steadily. No fever, bowels move fine. Taking in lots of water and output is adequate. Feel tired and somewhat dizzy, HR stays between 70-90, my normal is 50-60. BP has been normal. Just cant seem to get head clear and get energy back. Any ideas?? Im a 41 yo male with no hx. I did have a reaction to demerol while in hospital.

        • Hi Michael,

          It just takes a little time to feel “normal” again. It sounds like you are on the right track. Sometimes it can take a couple weeks, so just be patient. The energy will come back, but it just takes a little time. Not to worry, this is pretty normal.

          -Dr. Buck

  223. How long will dizziness and fatigue last???? Lapro went smooth, appendix had not ruptured. Only glitch was reaction to demerol. Im on nothing but tylenol, flagyl and bactrim now. Surgery was 6 days ago. No issues other than dizziness and fatigue. Thanks in advance.

  224. I had an appendectomy on saturday 6th April 2013 and was discharged on monday 8th April 2013. Since being discharged, I have suffered vomiting every day, nausea, dizziness, faintness etc, and pain where in my abdomen. I feel unwell.

    • Hi Lucy,

      I think you should return to your surgeon to have him examine you. You should not be feeling so bad. Sorry to hear this. Keep me in the loop and let me know what he says.

      -Dr. Buck

  225. Hi Dr. Buck. This is a great website. My boyfriend had his surgery on Monday (3 days ago) and I was just curious when it is okay for him to have a beer or a glass of wine?

    • Hi Emma,

      If he is tolerating regular food then he should be OK to have a beer or wine. Just make sure he “eases” into it and doesn’t go overboard the first week or so.

      Hope this helps!

      -Dr. Buck

  226. Hi Dr.Buck,
    I had a lap appendectomy yesterday morning and my stomach is extremely swelled up. I also have trouble walking around and feel dizzy. Is this normal?

    • Hi Theresa,

      It’s hard to say if it’s normal since it was so early after the operation. Hopefully you are feeling a little better by now. If not I would suggest you see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  227. Hi Dr. Buck,

    How are you? I had a Laparoscopic Appendectomy a month ago. I feel a 100% like my old self, and wanted to know: Would it be ok to take a beginners rock climbing class?

    Thanks for your time,

    • Hi Rebecca,

      If you have been increasing your activity with light jogging or some weights already and you have been feeling pretty good then I think you are probably OK to try a beginner class. If you have not done anything, I think I would start some other light activity first and see how you do.

      -Dr. Buck

  228. Hi Dr. Buck,

    Had a lap app a week ago and things seem to be progressing well. My one concern is this burning pain sensation i’m getting from my lowest incision point. Besides that no other symptoms, nor is it red around the incision. Is it too soon to assume anything such as nerve damage and just blame it on post-op ups and downs?

    • Hi Anthony,

      I think I would give it a week or so and see how it does. It’s pretty early after the operation to say if there is a problem or not. I think in a couple weeks it should be improved. If it’s not, I suggest seeing your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  229. Dr Buck, I had a laparascopic appendectomy 8 days ago and all went well. It was not going to burst but was abnormal and needed to be removed. Day 2 and day 6 I felt great but all the other days I am still feeling a lot of “cramping” on my right side and uncomfortable when I take a deep breath where the surgery was. Is this normal or should I be concerned?
    Thanks, Carol

    • Hi Carol,

      Its difficult to tell what exactly is going on, however, if you are not having fevers and chills I think you are OK to wait a bit. I would make sure you are having normal bowel movements with either Milk of Magnesia or Senna over the counter medication. If you are experiencing fevers, I suggest seeing your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  230. Hi Dr. Buck,

    Sorry to bother you again! I had hoped all my medical problems were over but i may be experiencing a new complication. I had my appendix out via laproscopic appendectomy on 24th March (about 3 1/2 weeks ago). I work as a yoga and Pilates teacher, and after having a week off work, i tried my best to return to teaching my classes only by instructing verbally and not demonstrating much at all. I managed to do this really well for about another week.

    After attending a course for yoga teachers at about the 2 week post-op mark, i discovered i was able to practice a little bit of yoga without incident. in fact it felt really good and i was careful to be gentle and avoid ab work or backbends.

    Since participating in that course nearly 2 weeks ago, i have gradually increased my participation and demonstration in the classes i teach, and yesterday taught 4 yoga and Pilates classes in which i participated/demonstrated quite a lot… I even performed some rather intense planks, chatturunga, up dog (a back bend) and quite a lot of abdominal work. i felt great at the time. did not feel any pain. felt really strong!

    However, last night, probably 2 hours or more after teaching my last class and after lying down on the couch for a while, I got up and took a few steps and noticed that my belly just felt a bit weird. not especially painful, just felt a bit odd and maybe a teeensy bit tender. i put my hand on my belly button area and noticed what felt like a pea sized lump underneath and maybe just bellow my belly button. it feels pretty hard, not soft. not super painful to touch, just feels weird. i haven’t noticed it until now, but as i hadn’t been prodding the area very much until now i’m not sure if maybe its been there the whole time and i’ve just not noticed. or, perhaps is it related to having done too much exercise yesterday? I think my belly button looks a bit more closed up, but it is still an “inny” and from the naked eye you can’t detect the lump.

    i wondered if i’d given myself a hernia, but i would have thought if that was the case i would have felt pain during the classes i taught. not hours afterwards. in fact, i have not felt any sudden pain at all and it is actually not even painful when just sitting around or walking around. it’s just a little tender when i press it and i can notice something there if i bend over (like leaning over a marble). the lump is still there now.

    I did have some similar tenderness to the left side of my belly button about a week and a half ago that I asked my surgeon about at my follow up appointment. It felt like the area under the skin on the left side of my belly button was (and still is) a little bit firm. Not super hard and not like a lump. the surgeon said that was caused by a “healing bar” (i think) which was the muscle healing at the site of the internal stitches. apparently that can cause a little bit of inflammation. she wasn’t worried.

    Do you think the (new?) lump underneath my belly button is another kind of “healing bar” and i may have just overdone things a bit and caused some inflammation? or do you think i might have a hernia?

    i have booked in for another post op appointment with the surgeon to check it out on tuesday. but do you think it could be an emergency and i should insist on seeing someone sooner? I don’t want to jump to conclusions and have to end up taking more time off work or wasting more time in emergency rooms.

    • Actually – i guess calling it a lump is not entirely accurate. I just had a feel of it again and it’s actually quite flat. i can’t feel any edges. so instead of being round like a pea, it’s really more of a disc. like the size of a small coin.

  231. Hello Dr. Buck. On 4/12 I had a unilateral laparoscopic salpingo-oophorectomy and tumor removal. Today will make 7 days since the operation. I’ve been having painful bowel movements since the surgery and also have pain towards the end of urination, should I be concerned? I am not constipated at all and have 3 movements per day. As for the painful urination, I’m wondering if it could be a UTI?

    The largest incision (approx 4 inches) has become increasingly painful today (the 7th day). From what I can tell through the steri-strips, there doesn’t seem to be any swelling or increased warmth coming from the incision. As an FYI, there had been a huge misunderstanding in which mistakenly thought the dressing was supposed to stay on for 7 days. On 4/17 (5 days since surgery) when I called my doctors office to inquire about a strange smell coming from the wound I came to realize that the dressing was supposed to come off within 2 days of the surgery and then the steristrips come off at 7days. In a bit of a panic, I then quickly removed the dressing and tried to gently wash/clean the steristrips which were under the gauze. The dressing was wet and it smelled AWFUL. There was a good amount of old/decaying blood on it, but from what I could see, no pus or yellow discharge. I didn’t realize it was wet since it was covered with that plastic film, and didn’t realize I shouldn’t have been showering with it, HUGE mistake, I know :( I’m really starting to worry because in the 36hrs since removing the dressing, I’ve been having a lot more pain at the incision site. Should I be concerned?

    • Hi,

      It’s possible you may have an infection or a hematoma which is causing the problem. I think the best thing to do is to see your surgeon as soon as you can. Most likely you will just need some antibiotics for a little bit to clear up the problem.

      -Dr. Buck

  232. Hi there-
    I had an emergency surgery to remove my appendix March 31. While doing the surgery laparoscopically (?), the surgeon fixed my umbilical hernia from my last pregnancy.

    I was healing nicely and not feeling any more belly button pain for the past week. Today I have terrible pain in my belly button…almost radiating out an inch or so around my belly button.

    Could this be my hernia coming back? Ugh. I have call into the surgeon to see what he suggests, but found this website helpful while I’m waiting for my call to be returned.


    • Hi Amy,

      Hopefully you have seen your surgeon by now. If you haven’t, here is some insight. Sometimes it is a recurrence of the hernia, but sometimes it is just over-activity that causes an abrupt increase in pain. I would give it a few days rest and go from there. If it still is painful, see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  233. Thanks Dr. Buck for this site. I have been searching the web for days. I had my appendix removed on 04/26. She said it was slightly perforated but had not burst. I left the hospital the next day. They were never really able to control my pain but I managed pretty well. This last saturday I started getting nauseous especially after I ate. Yesterday I was stuck to the couch all day unable to eat or drink anything for fear of vomiting. Today I felt a bit better but still have bouts of nausea and sharp pains after eating. I have dropped almost 10 pounds since the surgery due to fear of eating because of how sick I feel after. I am trying to increase my food intake but I just feel so awful after eating that it is hard. My fever never gets above 99.5 but it does come and go. Do you think I am still healing and just need to wait it out or should I be more worried?


    • Hi Nicole,

      Sorry for being so late responding! I think you are OK so far. If your symptoms persist much more than one week it would be wise to see your surgeon. Especially if you develop a fever over 100.5.

      -Dr. Buck

  234. Hey Dr. Buck,
    I think you suck! I don’t believe for one second that you are truly a doctor. I think you’re full of bologna.

    • Hi Deaanna,

      Well that’s certainly a bold comment! Haha…you are entitled to think whatever you like. Have a great day!

      Dr. Buck

  235. Hello Dr. Buck,

    I had a lap app on 28/04/13 and have had a rough time since. Long story short – A week after my surgery I was told I had an UTI, for which I was given some antibiotics, and a day after that was diagnosed the incision at the belly button started to eject puss. I have been getting the infected incision cleaned and ‘packaged’ daily for over a week and taking stronger antibiotics since 10/05/13. The infection getting better but very slowly. I write because I now have a sharp, yet infrequent pain right where the appendix would be. This has been happening for about 2 days now, not getting worse and not getting better. I have read many of the above comments, but still am not sure if this new pain is something that can fix itself (with help from the antibiotics) or if I have another complication. Any advice or help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you very much!

    • I apologize but I just re-read it and spell check changed frequent to infrequent. THe sharp pain sort of pulses and comes and goes through the day. Also, unlike the comment before me, I think I you are a very kind and generous person to give us your valuable time and advice. Thank you kindly.

    • Hi Dhiren,

      Sorry to get back to you so late, but I think if you are not experiencing increasing abdominal pain, fevers and chills it will resolve on it’s own. If you are experiencing these symptoms you should see your surgeon about it.

      -Dr. Buck

      • I am feeling much better now. The infection is clear and well on my way. Thank you for your help and reply!

  236. Hi Doc,
    I had a “lap app” on May 3. I feel totally fine but my family and nurse friends etc are advising that I should still stay off work – as a chef; the work involves lots of lifting and making quick movements and stretches. There are also a lot of stairs to run up and down many times a day. Reading many of the stories on this page it seems the most common problem is people thinking they feel fine so they return to “normal” but then end up hurting themselves. So with all that in mind I wondered what you might think about me returning to work. (My boss says there’s no rush for me to go back!!)

    • Hi Steve,

      Most patient are OK going back round 3-4 weeks. Just make sure you pay attention to your body your first few days back to see if you are overdoing it or not.

      -Dr. Buck

  237. Thank you for creating this forum to help people who are dealing with appendectomy procedures. I had surgery 2 months ago, but due to being overseas, have not been able to follow up with my surgeon. I had an allergic reaction to the suture materials and an infection of the surgical wound which was treated with antibiotics. I finished my medicines, but the drainage took a while to resolve itself. I have experienced a sharp stabbing pain in the same area as my surgical scar when I was trying to bring myself up from sitting on the floor and was coughing from a cold. It was so sharp I had to stop. My father-in-law believes it was gas in my gut. I am not convinced because it was when I was coughing and my core muscles were contracted due to the coughing and me trying to get up from sitting on the floor. I was not able to get much rest post op, and being a mom with a toddler, the weight lifting restrictions were not at all easy to contend with. My appendix was somewhat connected to my colon so the doctor had to take a small part of my colon as well. I am wondering what could’ve caused such a sharp stabbing pain to take my breath away?

    • Hi Aylin,

      I’m not really sure why you are having sharp pains like that. It’s possible it is healing nerves, but they usually are not so severe. I think if they continue you should see your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  238. Dear Dr Buck,

    I had ex lap surgery January 22 2013, I noticed i have been having pain at the side of my abdomen wall and when I sit feel like something is piercing my right side waist line. I also feel some noise in my stomach sometimes. I don’t feel sick except the pains. I want to know if it normal or if there is something to worry about. Please I need your advice.

    • Hello,

      It’s really difficult to tell exactly what is going on with you. I think I would recommend you return to your surgeon so he can examine your abdomen. Plus I’m not sure why you had the operation…that could have something to do with it also.

      Take care,

      -Dr. Buck

  239. Hi Dr. Buck. I’m 18 years old and I just had a lap app two days ago. I haven’t really eaten anything except for grapes and other fruit. Not much of an appetite. I’ve drank a lot of water, and the occasional glass of Sprite. It hurts to stand up and walk around and it’s hard to sleep at night. I get the occasional low grade fever. I have been experiencing mild dehydration as well. I want to drink more water, but when I do, I feel more bloated. How do I get this gas to go away? I get a bit nauseous throughout the day, which makes me lose my appetite ever more. I’m not sure if this is normal or not. I would just like to eat normally and drink normally. Also is it okay to drink soda? I don’t drink much of it, but I have this craving for grape soda and it’s unreal. And how long after surgery do you recommend driving? Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Ryan,

      The bloating may take 1-2 weeks to go away. Hopefully t has improved by now. Sorry I’m getting to you so late!

      -Dr. Buck

  240. Hey Dr. Buck
    I’m a bit over one week into post op for lap appen and is recovering well, but the swelling/bloating in the stomach area has not subsided. I’m currently in the hospital but the faculties are incompetent. Do you have any advice for the swelling/bloating?

  241. Hi Dr Buck,
    First of all thanks for this wonderful website :) I had my appendix removed on May 15th 2013 since then I was feeling nausea i did get better after a while but I still get that way once in a while for example I been feeling fine for a few days then tonight I am experiencing nausea haven’t thrown up since before surgery , Is this normal or what should I do for this it will be 4 weeks since surgery on Wednesday kind regards Gordon

    • Hi Gordon,

      This is definitely not normal and hopefully you have been in to see your doctor since writing this. Sorry I’m so late getting back to you. Keep me updated.

      -Dr. Buck

  242. Hi Doctor,

    I did the surgery last tuesday, i felt ok the first 3 days, but then I went for a long walk about 2-3 hours and after that I got back pain in my appendix side, I had a temp of 90 and it’s getting harder for me to walk.

    Is that normal and would be due to anesthesia as it stays for some time after the surgery.


    • Hi Ramez,

      It’s possible you had too much activity a little too soon after surgery. I would give it some rest and if it gets better then it most likely was overactivity a little too early.

      -Dr. buck

  243. Thank you for hosting this website, it is very helpful. I had my lap app about three weeks ago. For the first two weeks after the surgery, I had a morning and evening cough (productive) and a scratchy throat below my vocal chords. The cough has become much less frequent now (maybe once a day) and much less productive, but now my throat feels like there is a rubber band around it at the entrance to my lungs (just below my collarbone) and is still scratchy in a small spot there. Should I be concerned about this? Thank you for your guidance.

    • Hi Walt,

      It’s possible you had pharyngitis after the surgery. I would see your primary care physician to sort it out.

      -Dr. Buck

  244. Hello Dr. Buck,
    It’s been a little over a year since my laproscopic appendectomy. A few weeks after my surgery I went in for a check up and was still experiencing pain. They were worried I had an absess but when the results came back they said it was just irritation from the surgery which wasnt normal but wasnt serious. Moving forward a year I still get twinges in my right side where the appendix was every time I exercise, lift things, or sometimes just when I turn to quickly at the waist. I was wondering if this is just from scar tissue or if it never healed properly?

    • Hi Sarah,

      It’s possible the scar tissue is causing this or a pinched nerve. Unfortunately this is a difficult situation to be in, because there is no really great way to treat it. If you were my patient I would probably try to inject the area with some local anesthetic (lidocaine), and see if the pain resolves. If it does, it means it’s a nerve….and if it doesn’t it’s probably scar tissue. The other possibility is that there is a muscle strain that never healed after surgery and you keep re-injuring it with activity. If it is relieved by rest and motrin, it may be a muscle strain.

      -Dr. Buck

  245. Hey Dr Buck
    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy almost 3 weeks ago, and I’m experiencing really severe pains in the area I had them before my appendectomy. It’s very sharp pain and is making me feel quite nauseous. The pains been getting worse over the past 3 days, and now it’s constant and really quite bad.
    Any advice?

    • Hi Carlos,

      I think you should see your doctor again. You should be improving over the week, not the other way around. It’s possible you have an infection where the appendix used to live.

      -Dr. Buck

  246. Hi Dr Buck
    I wondered if you can offer me some advice please?…
    3 yes ago I had a laparoscopic ventrosuspension operation, immediately on waking after the operation I had intense burning sensation on the left side of my pubic bone, I informed the consultant but was told it would settle. A few days past and he was right it did pass but was replaced with horrendous, what I can only describe as electric shock type pain in the same area this sometimes shoots OK into my groin. The pain of these shocks is there all day everyday I have been seeing my physio for 2.5 yes now and tried all kinds of treatment and have now been referred to pain management ( it certainly isn’t managing this pain) over the 3 yes I havbeen given amitryptaline, gabapentin, other drugs but cannot remember their names and now I am having steroid injections again no use. When I describe my symptoms to any medical professional they look at me as though I am crazy and said those dreaded words ” I have no idea what is going on” ….I have even been questioned on my mental health ( by pain management) and was given the all cleat on that one.
    Do you have any idea what this could be or any advice that could help me please?

    Many thanks in advance.

  247. Hi Dr Buck,

    I had a lap appy about 7 weeks ago and my appendix had ruptured. I spend 4 days in the hospital with no infection and recovered well. Just this week I have started to develop on and off nausea and some mild pain in my lower abdomen. No fever / bowels working fine. Also some lightheadedness. Is the seasickness feeling normal this far post op or something I should get checked out?


    • Hi Bill,

      This could be unrelated to your surgery this far out. I would give it about 24-48 hours. If you are not improving by then, you should see your doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

  248. Hi Dr. Buck
    I’m only 12 years old but I have some concerns. I had a laparoscopic appendectomy on May 30 this year. I recovered normally in the hospital but couldn’t walk and my bladder was readjusting. I have been experiencing mild nausea on almost everyday. My bowels have not been working well either. I went swimming exactly 2 weeks after my surgery and had a stomachs ache the next day. I had my follow up appointment a few days ago and the doctor told me that my stool was very hard and I have been constipated lately and my mom had to give me a laxitive and pick up some stool softener medicine. My stomachs just aches. At the appointment the doctor said that after looking at my appendix, they concluded that I didn’t have appendicitis but took it out just in case. He said I had a stomachs virus that mimicked appendicitis. That all didn’t add up. I had sharp pains where my appendix was located, I could not stop vomiting for two days, a stomach virus couldn’t cause the pain I was experiencing, and I am a very skinny child due to my ADHD medicine and my high matabolism, so my appendix is probably smaller than it is suppose to be and looks normal sized when inflamed. Is that possible? My bellybutton feels a lot better but I would like to know if there is any stretches I could do to exercise it because I haven’t since my surgery. Is what I am experiencing something to be worried about. I have a loss in appetite still, nausea, and a little weight loss because of my appetite. I’m 12 and I weigh 68.4 lb. is that bad? Thanks!

    • Hi Michah,

      I think it would be a good idea to see your doctor again. You should not be nauseous everyday this far out from the surgery. I”m not exactly sure what is going on so I think it’s best if you were evaluated in person.

      -Dr. Buck

  249. Hi so its a little over two weeks since I had my lamproscopic apendectomy and in the middle of the second week and i started to lay on my stomach to sleep cause thats the most comfortable position for me and i was fine once i posittioned myself and stayed still but felt some pain if i needed to adjust my self or if i were to lift myself up. I then began to feel a little pain when id sit regularly, also I was reaching to high place a few days ago and I felt like maybe I stretched my abdomen to far for its liking because it cause more pain where my scars are a little to the right of my belly button and its there when I sit and I dont know if I just pulled something or if I maybe tore some of the tissue. do I have anything to worry about? Would love to hear back from you, thanks.

    • *laparoscopic

    • Hi Tessa,

      At this point I think you should give it some rest from rigorous activity. I think you will improve with the rest. Most of the time this pain is from over-use just a little too early after the surgery.

      -Dr. Buck

  250. Hi there. I’m 21 years old and had a laparoscopic appendectomy 5 days ago. I’m still very sore but bloating is going down and each day I notice less pain. I have though had difficulty urinating. My flow stops and starts and it takes quite a while to empty my bladder. It doesn’t hurt, and I also didn’t have a cath. I’m scheduled to fly to NY for a wedding tomorrow night. Would there be any concern in traveling so soon? It will have almost been a full week from the surgery. Thanks for your help!

    • Hi Liv,

      I think it sounds like you are on the right track. There should not be any concern with your flight and the urinating should improve over the next few days.

      -Dr. Buck

  251. Hi Doc,
    I am 4 days post op, out of hospital same day of surgery lap app. 33 male. First two days slight constipation, now I have frequent diarrhea after eating and gas pains while pain meds are wearing off only. Just wondering if the pain meds are covering up a possible infection in my intestines? occasional chills, do have some sweats once in awhile but no fever. Other than that normal as possible after 4 days. Thanks in advance.

    • Hi Rod,

      Hopefully things have cleared up by now. It’s not uncommon to have some diarrhea after constipation.

      -Dr. Buck

  252. it’s been 2 weeks since my open surgery for appendix removal which had already burst before the i saw a pin sized opening at the stitch had already been removed about 4 days before.the opening bleed a little(about one or two drop) and watery brown pus also seen. should i be concerned and contact my doctor or it is a simple case?
    note: today i’ll finish my prescribed medicine an on my follow-up dr said everythng was all right and i do not need to visit again.

    • Hi.

      I think by now it has either improved or not. If you have more questions let me know.

      -Dr. Buck

  253. Hi Dr.Buck,

    I love this thread- very informative!
    I have had my appendix out by laparoscopic surgery on the 11th of June and have had no complications since. I’m 22 and I have returned to work 2 and a half weeks after the surgery (work in a clothes shop, some moderate lifting). I was out on Saturday night and my friend who hadn’t heard I had surgery ran over and lifted me up in the air by the waist. (A less severe version of the heimnick maneuver, lol). I could feel tension around my belly button yesterday but no pain, today however it feels more stiff and tender to the touch. Have I done damage? Thanks in advance!

    • Hi Laura,

      I think you should take some motrin or tylenol and give it about 24-48 hours. Its most likely just normal pain after surgery with too much activity. That usually improves in 1-2 days.

      -Dr. Buck

  254. Hi Dr Buck,

    I’m 10days post op and saw my dr today for pain I had been having around my left incision site (tender to touch, muscle achey pain, worse with movement) I’m already on keflex to ward off infection due to a massive allergic reaction to either the dermabond or the sutures. The Dr was concerned and ordered an ultrasound. What they found was a small hematoma. Could this really be the cause of all my pain? Also, how long does it typically take for a hematoma to reabsorb? Should I limit activity in any way to prevent further bleeding?

    Thank you so much!

    • Hi Jillian,

      This could definitely be the cause of your pain. It may take a few weeks for the hematoma to resolve depending on the size of the hematoma. If you are not on any blood thinner medications, you should not need to limit your activity. I would continue to be careful with your activity just based on the duration from your surgery. If it does not improve over the next 5-7 days (the pain) then I think you should go back to the surgeon or your family doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

  255. Dr. Buck,
    I got my appendix removed 3 weeks to date. My appendix did not burst, but Doctors in the ER recommended I get it taken out because of the pain I was having. I have been nauseous everyday since my surgery, no vomiting (although sometimes I feel like i want to), and no fever. Is this normal? How long do some patients experience the nauseous feeling after getting their appendix removed? Any advice or guidance would be appreciated. Thanks for your help.

    Brad – 30 year old male

    • Hi Brad,

      This is not normal to have nausea this far out from surgery. I really think you should see your surgeon or family doctor about this.

      -Dr. Buck

  256. Hi Dr. Buck, I am 17 years old and had my lap appendectomy a little over two weeks ago (2 weeks and 2 days to be exact). I feel great, except for the occasional feeling of discomfort (not pain though), and I never was in any pain after the surgery (just feelings of discomfort which have pretty much stopped) and I never had any problem eating or anything post op. Football is starting though and I have to ask, am I going to be able to play? I know football is a rough sport which includes weightlifting, conditioning, and the risk of taking a helmet to the stomach… But this is going to be my senior year and I’m really hoping I’ll be able to play. I haven’t met with my surgeon yet (my appointment is in a few days), so I figured I would ask you. So do you think I’ll be able to play sometime in mid August?

    • Hi Benton,

      You should have plenty of time to heal from the surgery to play football. Especially if you have been very active all your life and are in good shape. Most high school students I operate on for appendicitis I send back to sports in about 4 weeks. Good luck this season!

      -Dr. Buck

  257. Hello! Thank you so much for the service you provide with this website – you sound like a wonderful doctor. I am 6 weeks post laparoscopic appendectomy, and things have been going fairly well. However, I am still bloating up by the end of the day and find it very difficult to wear the pants that I wore prior to my surgery. My doctor recommended probiotics but I’m still experiencing this issue. Are there any other solutions?

    Second, just this Monday I noticed that there is a hard little knot in/above my belly button, below my skin. The upper ridge of my belly button is also hard. Pressure on it is quite painful and bothers me. I’m thinking it might be, as mentioned above, a suture but I’m not sure. I desperately want to get back into working out more (lifting weights, doing core work, etc – gradually of course)& I don’t know if this means I shouldn’t. Do you recommend that I see a physician or should I just stop worrying? I feel embarrassed about seeing my doctor if it’s just something minor.

    • Hi Elle,

      Thanks for the compliments!

      I’m not sure if you mean you are not moving your bowels like you used to…or just water retention? Either way, if you have not been exercising as usual, and you start up again, that should help both situations.

      It probably is a stitch. Once it comes to the surface, it may pull out easily, or you may need to see someone to cut the suture and pull it out. If it’s really bothering you, I would not be embarrassed to see someone as they will have to open the skin over the knot and pull out the suture…you don’t want to do that at home!

      -Dr. Buck

  258. I am 41 female 6 days post op, I didn’t have my first bowel movement until today. MY belly button incision is pussing, Dr told me to push to get the puss out, rinse with water only and put gauze back in belly button to soak up excess, it hasn’t stopped pussing and is very red. I have no fever, a bit of nausea but think that may be from my lack of bowel movements until today. Should I go to the ER or wait for my apt on Tuesday>

    • Hi Jennifer,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you a little late. As long as the incision is open and draining, it is safe to wait. Although you really should be placed on some antibiotics to clear it up. If the redness spreads, or the pain increases, I would see a doctor right away.

      -Dr. Buck

  259. My mom is 82, overweight and just had laparoscopic appendectomy on wed, and is still in the hospital and it’s sat. They said the appendix was pretty inflamed but hadn’t burst. She doesn’t have a fever, and She hasn’t eaten much since the surgery. when she has been trying to eat since the operation, she can’t eat much if anything. Now they have her on a diet of just ice chips and water. And she’s still feeling very nauseous even after they have administered anti-nausea medication. Shouldn’t she continue to try to eat some solid food? Is it normal to be feeling nauseated 3 days after this noninvasive procedure? Also, do they stitch the area of the colon where they remove the appendix?

    • Hi Nick,

      I think people don’t often realize what is happening with the laparoscopic appendectomy. The incisions are really small, so it seems like “non-invasive” procedure and harmless. But anytime there are instruments in the abdomen, it can be dangerous. Of course most people don’t have a lot of problems after the appendectomy, but elderly and overweight folks tend to have more issues. The bowels can get “paralyzed” depending on how much manipulation happened during the surgery. That would cause the picture you are seeing now. It’s also possible she is developing an infection in the abdomen that just has not been found yet (although no fevers goes against this theory). Feeling nauseous 3 days after is not exactly “normal”, but it’s pretty early to tell why she is having the issue. If she is nauseous, I would not advance her diet to regular food. It’s OK to “starve” people sometimes if their bowels are not working properly…as in this case. People can go about 4-5 days without any nutrients at all before they start to break down muscles for fuel. Finally….yes, they stitch the colon where the appendix is removed. Hope this helped!

      -Dr. Buck

      • Sir, i had a diagnostic laproscopy 6wks back. Endometriotic patches were fulgurated and an ovarian cyst was removed. All went well except for low grade fever throughout which turned out to be due to UTI (S.aureus). But after 4 weeks of surgery my umbilical port started showing signs of inflammation and gradually by 2 weeks it ulcerated with purulent discharge. I have sent the sample for c and s, but i dont think it can be staph as i am already taking antibiotics for uti caused by staph. can it be atypical tb? i am really worried.

        • Hi Radha,

          I’m not sure where you are from but if TB is common in your area it may be a concern. It also could be a suture that has a small infection in it which caused a small abscess.

          -Dr. Buck

  260. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I had laparoscopic surgery on June 26 and everything has been going well then yesterday I noticed that my belly was like a balloon but not gassy or had any digestive problems. When I woke up this morning my right side is sore when I rolled on my left side and right side(front and back) feels tender when I take deep breaths. I have not experienced this pain for awhile. I also noticed my lower right side is more tender than usual when I empty my bladder (pushing w/ muscles). This pain was noticeable for two weeks after surgery and has since subsided and now returned? My wounds are healing fine. I feel tingling sensations now and then. The only pain that is consistent is the wound below my belly button. It is sore when I empty my bladder.

    Could leg stretches cause the pain on my right side? I am very active and prior to surgery I was seeing a physical therapist for a groin injury. I resumed PT two weeks after surgery. I have been very careful and when i feel pain I stop. The only thing that i think could have caused this is a leg extension stretch (lying on side, rise leg up and down). I did not feel pain when I was doing it. My surgeon gave me clearance to resume to my normal activities but I have not done anything strenuous for five weeks. Should I stop with PT? What kind of damages have I done?

    Thank you for your time!

    • Hi Jennifer,

      It could be related to your activity. I would take a few days off of those stretches and rigorous activity and see how it goes. If it gets worse or does not improve, I would recommend seeing your doctor.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hi Dr. Buck,

        I met with my Dr. and had an ultrasound to check for hernia and ovarian cysts. The results were negative. Dr. thinks that I had a ruptured ovarian cyst and the fluid was what caused me discomfort on my lower right ab and back. How long does it take the body to absorb the fluid and also could there be a hernia where the appendix was? Can the ultrasound probe detect this? I am still sore in my lower right ab but I can’t tell if the pain is from the ruptured cyst or where the appendix was.

  261. Hi i had a liproscopic appendectomy a week ago i feel like a buldge right under my insicion on my belly and a lil bit on the left side of my belly i feel a lil bit of pain i still have the steri strips on any ideas or suggestions ? I was given tylenol 3 and no antiboitics i noticed as well i wasnt told to use laxative pills to help me with my stool so i wont have to push hard should i get them ?

    • Hi Anthony,

      It’s possible your incision has some swelling, or you may have developed a hernia. Sounds like if they are just a little swollen its probably just edema (water accumulation). If you are having constipation, it’s a good idea to take a laxative after surgery.

      -Dr. Buck

  262. Hi Dr. Buck,

    I just had a laparoscopic appendectomy two days ago. Surgery went well and I was out of the hospital yesterday. Unfortunately this happened while I’m out of the country and now want to get back home. Will flying long distances have any affect on my condition? I will of course make sure not to carry anything heavy but what about the pressure in the air and the affect it may have on my stomach. Thanks..

  263. Sorry to use the reply piece of this great blog, bu the medical advice form is not working.
    My son in law hand a lap app approx 1 1/2 weeks ago. He was back in ER a couple of days later for intense pain in the same area. The switched his pain med from percocet to morphine and sent him home again. He was good for a week almost back to normal then 2 days ago back in ER again pain worse than the original and vomiting. I suspected abscess, but they say tests don’t indicate anything. CT of gallbladder was inconclusive. IT was a little thicker, but that’s it. Since they can’t find anything to explain the pain they are talking about sending him home. Tonight he is worse. Stomach really tight and has been vomiting nearly every half hour. The vomit tonight has bile in it. Dr is stumped. Any ideas are appreciated.

    • Hi Tracey,

      Sorry I’m getting back to you so late! Hopefully you’ve had thing sorted out. If not, you can email me at

      -Dr. Buck

  264. Hi Dr Buck,

    I had a laparoscopic appendectomy one year ago. It all seemed fine but recently I lifted a heavy stone base (about 50 pounds) and then for a few days I had a lot of stiffness in my stomach area when moving, stomach pain (with some mild tenderness around my incision areas). I also felt very tired and my stomach was making a lot of noises as if I was hungry(!).

    It has improved now, but I wonder if its normal a year on after surgery to have this kind of thing happen or whether something has not healed properly. This also happened about 6 months after my operation when I lifted something heavy.

    Thanks for all your comments here.

  265. I had an appendectomy 4 months ago and I have been having severe stabbing pains in my vagina and sometimes my butt. I also get pains where my appendix was but those aren’t stabbing more like twisting pains what could it be? Also I do have a 2cm cyst in my ovary could that be the cause my Obgyn said its highly unlikely.

    • Hi Dawn,

      I’m really not sure what this could be related to. Have you been moving your bowels normally? It’s also possible it’s related to some scar tissue which is causing problems with the colon and or uterus/vagina. I think it’s probably best to be evaluated by your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  266. I had an appendectomy in April of this year and have recently had some itching on one of my scars in my bellybutton and now it has been oozing some clear stuff and it smells funny! It also looks red in one spot. Could it be infected and if so how my surgery was months ago?! What should I do?

    • Hi Vanessa,

      1 Month is pretty far out to have an infection. But it’s possible it is a suture trying to reach the surface. I think it would be best if you were evaluated by your surgeon.

      -Dr. Buck

  267. Hi Dr.
    Thanks a lot for the great advice. I had an appendectomy a week ago and have been wondering whether I should remove the adhesive tapes under the gauze pads. From your advice, I understand I can do so after a week, right?
    Also, I was thinking of the kind of food I should take or stay away from to have a more smooth and faster recovery. What kind of exercises am I allowed to do? As I am normally an active person and feel bored having been sitting or lying down most of the time for the past few days. When could I go back to normal exercises I did like aerobics or pilares? I used to ride a bike as a means of transport. How long do I need to wait before I start again?
    Many thanks in advance

    • Hi Maryam,

      Yes, about 7 days and you can remove the tapes. There is no food restrictions after having an appendectomy. I tell people to take it easy for about 1-2 weeks, then increase your activity as tolerated for everything except lifting over 20lbs. I restrict most patients to not lifting anything over 20lbs for 3-4 weeks depending on their pre-operative health.

      -Dr. Buck

  268. Hi Dr. Buck,

    Great website. I think it’s great that you share this information with the world and answer questions of all types. Very honorable of you. I have a few questions regarding my lap app.

    I had my surgery on Monday night (16th 11pm) and the following day I felt a little sore but good. I hadn’t been able to urinate so they inserted a catheter to drain my bladder. I kept trying and trying and eventually I did pee twice but it was a weak stream. They inserted a rubber one and I took it for the night. The next morning I went back and it was removed. Doctor wanted to see if I could empty my bladder. I drank a bottle of water and was able to clear my bladder with a normal stream in about two tries. This was on Wednesday. After a check with an ultrasound, I was at 0 which was great. Now (Saturday night 21st) I’ve been going back and forth. My urine stream is weak but I am peeing regardless. I had a strong stream early in the morning. I honestly think I’m worried too much about urinary retention that I’m trying to pee and pee consistently. I have no prior urinary issues at all. I’m a healthy 30 year old male. Active in the gym and a healthy eater. Is there any reason to worry? Am I thinking about it too much? Is it normal for my stream to act this way since it’s only been 5 days after my surgery? Any help would be appreciated. I’m even avoiding drinking too much so that I don’t have to empty anything out. Is that bad? Should I be drinking more?


    • Hi Eric,

      Urinary retention is a fairly common issue after surgery for a lot of people. I usually leave a catheter in for about 7-10 days because most people have an issue about that long. It’s ok that yours came out, but don’t be surprised if it’s difficult for about 7 days. I think you are on the right track.

      -Dr. Buck

      • Hi Dr. Buck!

        Thank you for the fast and prompt response. Actually, today was actually a better today. My stream is slowly getting back to normal and my wife also told me to relax and “stop thinking about it” so much. I’m trying my best to not think too much about it and just going when I feel I have to go. I think I was anticipating it too much and thus it might have also been playing games with my head. Today has been much better and I’ve been drinking liquids. Do you recommend that I keep drinking plenty of water? One more question, I’m into Crossfit and weightlifting. I know you’ve mentioned 4 to 6 weeks before lifting and I’ve been thinking of starting at 6 weeks with low weights and slowly work my way up as the weeks pass by. Is this a good approach? I can’t begin to thank you enough. I feel so much more relaxed knowing this is normal so I’m trying to just let it roll normally. Thank you!

  269. Hello Dr. Buck,
    Awesome website!
    Well, I had my lap-appendectomy 2 weeks ago. From 2-3 days before surgery until now I have had a rapid heart rate (Tachycardia). I haven’t seen my surgeon after the op and didn’t have any follow up appointment with her (since she is in vacation neil Nov 21)!
    This palpation along with shorten of breath hurts me a lot while some times I feel chest pain (left side)! when i was at EM they did a ECG test and its result was OK.
    Last night my husband wanted to take to hospital since he was thinking it is heart attack!
    Also my lower abdomen is still slightly tender and I feel like it is still swollen…. I had some diarrhea yesterday but It stopped today! I really appreciate if you could tell me are these symptoms normal after lap appendectomy or not. and What should I do to handle them?
    Sorry for my poor English!
    Thank you so much

    • Hi Sepideh,

      I think it would be best if you went back to the hospital. The tachycardia & chest pain is not normal and could be a sign of a serious problem. I think it’s best if you see someone as soon as possible.

      -Dr. Buck

  270. Hello Doctor, I had my laparoscopic appendectomy done 15 days ago. I still have pain on my lower right side. My surgeon told me it is normal. But since yesterday I felt a burning sensation around my stomach and back and today I feel some pain on the left downside of my back.

    • Hi Marie,

      I would return to your surgeon or another doctor. Especially if you are having fevers or chills, it’s possible you have an infection.

      -Dr. Buck

  271. Hello! I actually had my laparoscopic appendectomy about 13 months ago. About week ago, I started working out, doing push-ups and sit-ups. After the first day, I started experiencing severe pain right where I had my left incision. Obviously, pain comes with working out. This isn’t the first time I’ve worked out since my surgery, but I’ve never had issues before; however, I also haven’t done full sit-ups since my surgery, but I’ve done other ab workouts. I am by no means an exercise person, I tend to juggle with workouts. My concern now is the fact that really the only pain I’m experiencing is the pain where my incision was. It hurts when I move, cough, laugh, and sometimes when I’m just sitting. Everyone keeps telling me it’s probably scar tissue, but I didn’t think scar tissue was common with laparoscopic surgeries. I had a pretty normal surgery, my appendix had not ruptured. I’ve had a pretty easy recovery, although I still experienced pain around my belly button when I carried a heavy backpack, even months after surgery. Is this normal? The pain makes it impossibly to do too many sit-ups or push ups, which causes nothing but frustration. Any advice would be great!


    • Hi Sam,

      It’s not normal to have that much pain for that long after your surgery. It’s difficult to tell what is going on. I would definitely go back to your doctor and explain your problem to him/her.

      -Dr. Buck

  272. I had a lap appendectomy 7 days ago and the healing process and pain reduction seems to be going fairly well. However, mid way through the day I get a very severe burning sensation in my lower left abdomen just above my groin when I go from a sitting position to standing position. I can make the pain go away immediately by sitting back down on the couch and putting my feet up. Is this nerve damage and when will it go away!!!

    Thanks in advance for your advice

    • Hi Aaron,

      It’s pretty early after the operation, so any pain at this point could be normal and take some time to resolve. It’s possible it is nerve pain, but I would give it a couple weeks to see if it goes away. I don’t think anyone would suggest another operation at this point would help your situation, so just watchful waiting I think is best.

      Dr. Buck

  273. Hi Dr. Buck,

    My husband had a laparoscopic appendectomy about 10 months ago. From past 2-3 days, he started experiencing pain in his abdomen where he has the incision scar. He feels the pains around his belly button too. Please advice if this is normal or if we may have to consult our doctor


    • Hi Janu,

      It’s possible he has an umbilical or incisional hernia. I recommend he sees his doctor for a physical exam.

      Dr. Buck

  274. Hey Doc,

    Thanks so much for this site. Hey. About 3.5 days after surgery I took off my bandages. On the bandage over my appendix, when I peel off the outer bandage the steri-strip peeled off with it. The incision looks fine. Any precautions or concerns?

    • Hi Chris,

      It’s OK. Just dry them well after showering, and be careful with them the first week as the skin is healed, but it’s not very strong yet.

      Dr. Buck