Patients often suffer from constipation after a surgery for which they received general anesthesia, according to WebMD. After surgery, the patient receives medications such as stool softeners to help alleviate the condition.
The best thing that the patient can do to ease his post-operative constipation is to eat, says WebMD. The act of eating stimulates the body into pushing the food through the digestive tract.
It is important to avoid prolonged constipation, especially after surgery, says About.com. A patient who feels the need to strain violently at stool can cause his sutures to burst. The hearts of patients who have had cardiac surgery also may not be able to withstand the stress of straining.