One week follow up: reasonable to ask for refills? (Photo)

I had significant pain post-op despite exparel. I was been given Percocet 5, Valium 5, and gabapentin. My PS called to check on me the night of day 2 and he called in toradol, and refills of the Valium and gabapentin which were very helpful. He gave me a new script for Percocet the next day too. Thing is, I have three children, one of whom is disabled and I'm still in pain not managed by Tylenol. Is it unreasonable to ask for a refill of the Valium, toradol, gabapentin, and maybe a Tylenol 3?

Doctor Answers 11

Pain medications refill

Thanks for your inquiry.  Every surgeon has his/her own policy when it comes to pain medications.  If you are suffering, I think it is only proper you discuss your pain with your surgeon.  There is no standardized schedule on how patients recover, best of luck.  

Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 197 reviews

Some patients still have pain requiring pain medication at 1 week post-op

Everyone recovers at different rates, and especially when it comes to pain.  We are all "hardwired" differently in our brains and nervous systems, and just like some people are highly sensitive to bright lights, loud noises, strong odors, and other such stimuli, I believe some people are more sensitive to painful stimuli too.  And, this doesn't even consider the fact that your specific operation might have needed something different from the usual, or been done in such a way as most people would have slightly more pain with that approach compared to others, anyhow.  So, I think there are plenty of plausible reasons why someone may still need some pain medication at 1 week after surgery, and as long as you and your surgeon are keeping track of how much you are being given and how much you're using, it should be fine to get a refill at this point.  I think sometimes we surgeons get hooked on the "marketing appeal" of things like "flash recovery" breast augmentation, and surgery without pain, even when Exparel is being used, and we feed that to our patients in an effort to boost market appeal for ourselves or the surgery in general.  We lose sight of the fact that this is still surgery at the end of the day, and while many patients may recover "in a flash" and go shopping the next day after surgery, many simply will not.  We shouldn't let those who do not feel as though there is something wrong with them, nor should the surgeons let their egos get in the way and think that somehow they aren't the "greatest surgeons out there" because they had a few patients who needed some pain medication.  I think if the truth be told, most of us still use some pain medication for most of our patients undergoing this type of surgery, simply because that is what keeps most people comfortable.  In addition, there is a big warning coming out from the FDA about using opioid medications to excess, or combining them with sedatives, like Valium - something that I, and most of my colleagues do in this situation, I think, given the nature of the surgery  - and that is having an impact on how people think about pain management after surgery now.  I believe that used appropriately, with safe doses, sound patient education and instruction, and close monitoring, these medications can still be used in this manner to great benefit of our patients.  I have done so for twenty years, and I don't see a reason to change that now based upon my own experience.  In reality, most patients have safe outcomes, and most patients recover just fine and go on to enjoy their beautiful results in the long run, even the ones who need a little extra pain medication at the beginning.  Best of luck.

Joseph L. Grzeskiewicz, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 87 reviews


I think it is still reasonable to ask for pain control after breast augmentation surgery.  I would go and see your surgeon.Best Wishes,Nana Mizuguchi, MD

Nana N. Mizuguchi, MD, FACS
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

Too much activity

If your pain is not controlled it is reasonable for you to ask for pain relief.  They may choose to give you different meds than you ask for, but they need to address your pain.  You should not be taking care of your children.

Gary Lawton, MD, FACS
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 135 reviews

One week follow up: reasonable to ask for refills?

You should not have to be taking any type of narcotic pain medication or Valium at this point in your recovery. You can always try ice or ibuprofen. Discuss any pain problems with your surgeon at your follow up appointments. 

Lawrence Bundrick, MD
Huntsville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Pain Medication Refills?

Most patients will not need to take the heavier pain medication after a day or two.  This is something that you should address with your surgeon since you really should be pretty well pain free within the first week after surgery.  If not, this may indicate an underlying pain control issue or a problem in the healing process.

Christopher V. Pelletiere, MD
Barrington Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 73 reviews

Pain after BA

Thank you for your question. Immediate post op pain concerns need to be addressed by your surgeon. Please talk to your PS for evaluation

Ven Erella, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Pain after breast augmentation surgery.

Thank you for your question.I suggest contacting your surgeon to discuss pain management. Make sure you are following your post operative instructions and try not to overdo.Best of luck.

Brian K. Reedy, MD
Reading Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 144 reviews

Pain Medication

It is best to discuss the specifics of your pain management with your own Plastic Surgeon as they know your situation the best.
Take care

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 reviews

One week follow up: reasonable to ask for refills?

If you are having significant pain, discuss with your surgeon and ask for the medications that you need. 

Karol A. Gutowski, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 68 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.