Post-Operative Instructions

Distal Biceps

(You will receive your customized post-op instructions after your surgery.)


    Apply ice to the elbow and arm intermittently for the first 24-48 hours. The sling is helpful for resting the elbow.


    The sling is for your comfort. Remove it to move the shoulder, elbow, hand, and fingers. Gently work on straightening and bending your elbow and rotating your forearm. Using your other arm to help move your arm will be helpful initially. You may discontinue use of the sling when you feel comfortable. Don't lift anything heavier than a cup of coffee for the first 2 weeks.


    Motrin 800 mg every 8 hours as needed for pain

    Vicodin or Percocet as needed for severe pain

    To minimize gastric upset from narcotics or anti-inflammatory medicine, eat adequate amounts of food. Increase fluid and fiber intake to ease constipation from pain medicine. Stool softeners (Colace or Pericolace) can also be useful for constipation.


    Slight bleeding through the dressing is common. Excessive bleeding should be reported to your surgeon. Dressings must be kept dry. Modify your bathing appropriately to avoid getting the dressing wet. 72 hours postoperatively, remove the dressing, shower, then cover the incision with a fresh dressing if it is still oozing. Swimming and hot tubs are not allowed until the wound is completely healed. Use rubbing alcohol to remove the prep solution from the skin.


    Your surgeon should be contacted by calling 703-810-5210, 24 hours a day for any of the following symptoms:

    • Fever greater than 101.5 degrees F.
    • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath.-CALL 911 and go to the nearest emergency room.
    • Numbness, loss of good color or coolness in the arm.
    • Severe pain unresponsive to narcotic medication.
    • Excessive bleeding or vomiting.

    Your post-operative follow-up appointment is scheduled on __________________________________.

    If you need to verify or change your post-op appointment, please call 703-277-BONE (2663).