After surgery


Recovery area
The recovery room is staffed by trained nurses who specialise in looking after children after surgery.

When your child’s surgery is finished, you will receive a phone call from the recovery nurse. The nurse will ring the waiting room or your mobile phone. You will be called to the recovery room to sit with your child as he/she wakes up from the anaesthetic.

Only two parents/carers will be allowed into the recovery room. Other children are not permitted in the recovery room.

Please remember we have other patients in recovery so it’s important to keep things as quiet as possible.

Pain relief
After the anaesthetic it is quite normal for some children to wake up unsettled after surgery. This does not necessarily mean they are in pain and they will usually settle down after a little while. Some children remain drowsy after an anaesthetic and it is best to let them sleep.

If your child does feel pain after the procedure or surgery, he/she will be given additional pain relief medication as required.

Nausea and vomiting
Nausea and vomiting may occur. Certain operations, especially ear, nose and throat operations and those on the eyes are associated with nausea after the operation. The anaesthetist will often give your child medication during the operation to help this. If this nausea and vomiting continues the nurses may be able to give your child more medication.

Food and drink
Most children may have a drink as soon they desire, and then move to light food e.g. sandwiches, jelly and soup.

We ask that you bring in a bottle of milk/formula for your baby as they are likely to be hungry after surgery.

The nurses will let you know when it is safe for your child to eat and drink.

Discharge process
Once your child is awake enough and the recovery nurses are happy with his/her condition, your child will either:

  • Be discharged home from recovery
  • Be transferred to the Same Day Unit (also know as Ward 3D Lagoon at Monash Children’s Hospital Clayton)
  • Be transferred to a ward if your child is staying overnight.

Discharged home from recovery
Only select operations at Monash Children’s Hospital Clayton can be discharged from recovery. If your child is suitable the Same Day Unit Nurse will discuss this with you prior to your child going to theatre.

Transferred to the Same Day Unit
Your child will be transferred to the Same Day Unit to be monitored for a little while longer, and will be discharged home once the nurses think that your child is well enough to leave. Some children may have to stay longer than others.

Transferred to a ward if your child is staying overnight
Once your child is awake enough and the recovery nurses are happy with his/her condition, your child will be taken to the ward where he/she will be staying until well enough to go home.

If your child is going to be admitted to a ward, there may be a delay whilst waiting for a bed to be available on the ward. This will have no impact on your child’s care.

If your child is returning to a ward, your child will be returned to his/her usual bed.

Staying overnight 

Sleeping arrangements 
Monash Children’s Hospital is only able to provide sleeping facilities for one parent to stay overnight with their child. The hospital will provide a single sofa bed and linen.

Please note that parent beds for Monash Newborn patients are not currently available at Clayton. Limited parent beds are currently available at Casey and Dandenong.

For some parents at Monash Children’s Hospital, Clayton, Ronald McDonald House (Monash) accommodation is available for a nominal fee. Please speak to one of our staff for more information on how to access this service.

Recovery at home 

Following your child’s discharge plan
There must be a responsible parent and/or carer with your child overnight and for 24 hours when he/she goes home.

On discharge from hospital you will be given a General Information sheet with instructions on how to care for your child.

Alternatively you can download the Paediatric Day Procedures General Information – Post Procedures Sheet here.

Who to contact
If you have any questions after your child’s operation you can contact the Elective Surgery Services on 1800 786 188.
Alternatively you can call the surgery unit which your child was discharged from:

  • Monash Children’s Hospital Clayton:
    • Same Day Unit (Ward 3D Lagoon): (03) 8572 3380
    • Ward 3A Forest: (03) 8572 3300
  • Casey Hospital Ward F: (03) 8768 1660
  • Dandenong Children’s Ward: (03) 9554 8326

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