Going home after Cytoreductive surgery and HIPEC

Dr Tranoulis will suggest several strategies to help you continue your recovery at home, including instructions for:

  • Nutrition: Eat a diet high in calories to boost energy and high in protein to promote healing. If you get full quickly or don’t feel like eating, eat small, frequent meals throughout the day. Start slowly and ease back into your normal diet.
  • Bowel movements: Keep your bowels moving, and don’t go more than three days without a bowel movement. Pain medications slow your bowels, so use stool softeners.
  • Hydration: Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day.
  • Activity: Stay active with light exercise, such as multiple walks throughout the day — but avoid movements that engage your core and abdominal muscles. Walking will help you regain your energy, prevent blood clots and increase your overall sense of well-being.
  • Returning to work: Many patients can go back to work in about a month, as long as their duties don’t include heavy lifting.
  • Personal hygiene: You may shower, but do not take baths or use a hot tub until the incision is healed.
  • Postoperative checkup: Stay close to home for several days after discharge from the hospital. You will need see Dr Tranoulis for a postoperative appointment, or if a complication arises. You will usually have a follow up visit with Dr Tranoulis at 7 and 14 days post surgery and then at 6 weeks post surgery.


Common Issues:

  • Constipation: You should avoid straining hard to pass stool. If you do not open your bowels for more than two-three days you may need to take or increase the use of regular bowel medication such as Movicol, Docusate Sodium, Senna, or Lactulose. 
  • Pain: wound tenderness and discomfort is uaual and may last up to 3-4 weeks. You should be be able to walk reasonably comfortably with analgesia
  • Wound infections are uncommon. The usual sign of an infection is that the skin around the wound becomes very red and hot or there may be discharge from the wound. Small infections may settle after the discharge is cleaned away and an antiseptic like Betadine is applied twice daily. If you are concerned about the wound please contact us; it is possible antibiotics may be required.


The following signs and symptoms are not part of a normal recovery:

  • a fever > 38.5°C or are feeling unwell
  • offensive vaginal discharge or heavy bleeding or urine-like heavy discharge
  • wound becomes hot, painful or has offensive fluid draining from it
  • nausea and vomiting which does not settle
  • unable to empty your bladder or bowel
  • severe pain.
  • Tenderness or swelling in a leg/calf