Vascular Surgery: Carotid Artery Surgery Post-Surgical Instructions

The purpose of your surgery (Carotid Artery Surgery) is to increase the amount of blood flow to the brain and to remove plaque or clots which could decrease blood flow to your brain causing a stroke.

Nutrition: Eating a well balanced diet will promote healing and return of normal bowel habits.

Medications: Following your medication plan is very important. Please remember:

  • You may resume your daily medications as previously ordered.
  • If pain medication has been prescribed, take only as directed.
  • Be sure to ask your doctor when you can begin taking blood thinners such as Plavix & Coumadin.
  • Aspirin (one baby aspirin or 81 milligrams tablet) is recommended daily after surgery unless you have a history of an allergy.

Wound Care: You will have an incision on the side of your neck from the surgery. To promote healing of the incision, the following precautions should be taken:

  • Do not remove the strips of tape seen on the incision. They will fall off as the incision heals.
  • Redness and swelling will be present around the incision. There will also be some numbness at the base of the ear.
  • Because of the area of the incision, you may experience some difficulty swallowing for a few days after surgery.

Activity: You have just undergone major surgery and anesthesia. Both of these events have major effects on your body. To return to normal as quickly as possible, it is important to remember the following:

  • Do not smoke. Smoking affects many of your body systems and decreases flow of blood and oxygen, which are vital to the healing process.
  • Do not drive until after your first post-op visit.

Follow Up: Occasionally minor problems occur after discharge. It is important that you call the physicians’ office if the following occurs:

  • Increase in redness, swelling, warmth, tenderness and/or drainage from your incision
  • New onset of weakness or numbness of your arm or legs
  • An elevated temperature (above 101 degrees)
  • A sudden change of vision.

After you return home, it is important that you call (937) 276-2642 to make your follow up appointment with the doctor.

If you have any questions, feel free to call Debbie Akemon, RN at (937) 276-2642.