Your physician and the entire cardiothoracic surgical team will work with you and your family to get you ready to be safely discharged. A discharge planning nurse will meet with you to evaluate your needs and options for discharge. Most discharged patients go home with visiting nurse services two to three times per week. If we determine that you need care at a rehabilitation or skilled nursing facility when you leave the hospital, our discharge planner will help you and your family arrange this.

On the day of discharge, you will receive a finalized list of your medications and prescriptions to be filled at your pharmacy.

The usual discharge time at Boston Medical Center is 11:00 a.m. Please have your ride at the hospital by 11:00 a.m.

Leaving the Hospital

Most people are ready to leave the hospital within a week. You may return home or go temporarily to a rehabilitation facility until you are stronger. You may still find it difficult to perform everyday tasks, or even walk a short distance, but this will get better with time. Expect a recovery period of about six to 12 weeks. In most cases, you can return to work, begin exercising, and resume sexual activity after six weeks, but make sure you have your doctor's okay before doing so.

If you have any of the following signs or symptoms after leaving the hospital, call your doctor.

  • A fever higher than 100.4° F (38° C).
  • Rapid heart rate.
  • New or worsened pain around your surgical wound.
  • Reddening, bleeding, or other discharge from your surgical wound.
  • Increased fatigue or shortness of breath.

Follow-up Visit

Approximately two to four weeks after your discharge, you will have an appointment with your doctor and nurse practitioner to review your progress.

Once home, make an appointment to see your cardiologist and/or primary care physician.

Please call our office at 617-638-7350 if you are admitted to another hospital for any reason in the month following your discharge.