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What does recovery look like after brain surgery (Craniotomy)?

Aug 16, 2023
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Recovery process from brain surgery.

Recovery for each patient can be different related to many factors such as type and severity of your brain injury, the type of surgery and your current symptoms or deficits that preceeded surgery. 

Immediately after surgery, you are taken to recovery where you will be closely monitored by staff. Your wound is covered with a dressing and kept comforable with medication. You will be tested regularly for signs of brain damage. You may have some swelling of the head, eyes or face. 

The hospital stay usually averages 3-5 days. Once you go home you will take your medications as prescribed. You may feel some achiness related to surgery and some itching as the incision heals. You can feel very tired and resting will help. You can walk around for exercise but nothing strenuous  until cleared by the doctor. Therapy or home health care maybe ordered to assist you at home however sometimes you may go to a rehab facility. This will be discussed prior to your surgery. You may have some fluid collection beneath the wound for a while and should resolve with time. You should immediately notify your surgeon if you have signs of infection such as fever of 101 or higher, discharge or redness. In the event of severe headache, seizures, chest pain, new onset of confusion should be seen as an emergency. 

You will followup in 2-3 weeks from your surgery date with your surgeon so we can check your wound and progress.