Some of the aftercare instructions following a total colectomy include taking pain medications as instructed by the doctor, avoiding heavy machines and driving if taking narcotic pain medicines, proper wound care and eating small amounts of foods several times per day, according to MedlinePlus. Medical professionals advise that patients should return to work when they are comfortably active around the house for eight hours at a time and feel well.
After a total colectomy, patients should take short walks and then increase their levels of exercise slowly without pushing too hard, as MedlinePlus explains. Usually, those taking pain medications take them three to four times a day and at the same times each day for three to four days. This helps controls the pain better. Patients who have their staples removed are advised not to soak or scrub their Steri-Strips when showering and to keep their wounds dry at all times. They should also avoid wearing tight clothing to prevent rubbing against the wound as it heals.
Patients who undergo a total colectomy need to space out small meals, waiting the same amount of time between each one, as advised by MedlinePlus. It is also recommended that they add new foods into their diet slowly, taking one at a time, and eat protein every day.