Yellowstone Surgery Center provides outpatient services where you are not ‘admitted’ and you typically go home the same day that you visited the surgery center.

Your Surgeon or Physician Assistant (PA)

  • Will answer any questions you may have.
  • Will write your discharge orders.
  • Will write any prescriptions you will use at home.

Your Nurses

  • The nurses will inspect your surgical dressing, may discontinue any IVs that may have been placed during surgery.
  • The nurse will go through a list of items to make sure you are comfortable with your home care and that you are able to recognize and prevent any complications before you are discharged.


  • After the discharge instructions have been reviewed, your driver (a responsible adult over the age of 18) will be asked to sign your discharge papers.
  • At this time, your driver will be asked to bring the vehicle around while your nurse gets you ready to leave the facility.
  • Your nurse will transport you out of the facility with a wheelchair and wait with you until your ride arrives. Your nurse will also assist you getting in your vehicle.
  • Discharge Papers and Additional Notes: For our most popular procedures we have the discharge papers, and additional notes available for download.



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Expected Pain

You have the right to expect appropriate pain control. The GOAL for your pain management is to make your pain TOLERABLE, it is NOT to take away all of the pain.

  • A tolerable pain level is anywhere on the pain scale of 1-4, YOU decide.
  • An “ache” or “soreness” is a tolerable pain level.
  • You should be able to get up and move around but DO NOT take pain medication to do more than what your physician wants you to do.
  • You need to be able to rest and heal.
  • You also need to be able to cough and take deep breaths.

If you need help with managing pain, talk to your nurse or doctor. Using a Pain Scale to describe your pain will help our staff determine the severity of your pain and help them make the best decisions to help manage it.

Pain Control

Your physician may write a prescription for pain pills that will be used at home. The Yellowstone Surgery Center does not fill prescriptions; therefore, you will need to be prepared to purchase your pain medication at your pharmacy of choice.

There are other things you can do to help your pain, these include:

  • Position yourself in a “neutral” position, head elevated 45 degress, pillow under knees.
  • Ice incision area – do not put directly on skin, 20 minutes 4-6 times a day (NO ICE unless approved by your physician).
  • NO HEAT unless approved by your physician.
  • Distract yourself by watching TV, listening to music, or reading.
  • Take other medications as directed by your physician that are not opioids.
  • Take your medication as ordered, DO NOT take more than prescribed unless directed to do so.
  • Do not drink alcohol or use “street” drugs while taking your pain medication.
  • Do not take over the counter medications, supplements or vitamins unless directed to do so.
  • If you have left over medication take to a pharmacy to dispose of it, don’t save it to use “later”.
  • If you have sleep apnea, USE YOUR CPAP machine even if you are going to just take a nap.
  • Take a stool softener twice a day as long as you are taking the narcotic to avoid constipation.

Common issues that will dissipate

  • Increased swelling
  • Tightness
  • Soreness
  • Muscle spasms or cramping
  • Surgery site pain
  • Muscle pain from positioning
  • Sore throat from breathing tube placed during procedure

Body Changes


  • It is normal to have to have difficulty sleeping.
  • Do not sleep or nap too much during the day.
  • If you have sleep apnea, USE YOUR CPAP machine even if you are going to take a nap.


  • Medication works better when you are relaxed.


  • Your appetite may be poor, your desire for solid food will return.
  • Drink plenty of fluids to keep from getting dehydrated.

Moving / Activity


  • Refer to physician’s discharge instructions with mobility.

Physical Therapy

  • If ordered by your physician, you may be required to attend Physical Therapy after being discharged.

Complete Patient Procedure Guide

Select from the Following Items for Your Procedure Guide

before procedure
day of procedure