Jaw and Face (Orthognathic) Surgery Post-Operative Instructions
After Jaw surgery, there will be sutures on the inside of the child's mouth (which you will not be able to see from the outside), and there may be two or three tiny sutures on each side of his face near his jaw. Your child will probably have a swollen face.
The wounds inside your child's mouth require no special care. If there is a complaint of pain that gets worse over time instead of better, or if there is swelling or foul smelling drainage from the mouth, there may be a wound infection and you should call the number listed below. Mouthwash may be prescribed, and it should be used after eating and before going to bed.
Your child will have a swollen face, may have a stiff neck and may be irritable due to hunger and pain. By the time he is ready to go home from the hospital, his pain should be well controlled on oral pain medications such as Tylenol with codeine, or Tylenol alone.
Your child may have his jaws wired shut, and should be on a liquid diet , progressing to a blenderized soft diet over time. A dietician will be available to help you plan nutritious blenderized diets. A syringe with rubber tubing may be necessary at first for eating, but over time, he will be able to eat with a cup or spoon. Follow meals and snacks with water or mouthwash to clean the inside of the mouth.
When To Call
Call if you observe signs of a wound infection, if your child starts to run a fever (over 101.5 F), or if you have any questions or concerns regarding his progress.
Return to Clinic
You will be given an appointment to return to the clinic about one week after discharge. If you are unable to keep the appointment, please call and reschedule.
For medical questions, please call:
- Craniofacial Anomalies Program: (734) 764-2582.
- Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Clinic: 8 AM-5 PM (734) 763-8063
- After hours and on weekends, call Hospital Paging at (734) 936-6267 and ask for the Plastic Surgeon on call.