Home Care Instructions
This handout gives you information about caring for yourself at home after your
surgery. If you have any questions, be sure to ask your nurse or doctor.
What is a pubovaginal sling?
You have noticed that you may leak urine when you cough, strain or sneeze
(incontinence). As a result of pregnancy, childbirth and/or aging the support for
your bladder has been lost. This surgery repairs the support and prevents urine
(a) normal bladder support (b) bladder before surgery
Using some of your own abdominal tissue (fascia),
a sling is placed under the urine tube (urethra) and
the bladder neck. This creates a hammock effect
that squeezes the urethra shut when you cough,
sneeze or strain.
(c) after surgery
What to Expect after Surgery
You will be in the hospital for 1-2 days.
It is normal to feel some pain in the surgical area for 1 to 3 weeks after surgery.
You will have pain medicine prescribed for you, but you should only need it for
the first few days after surgery.
After the catheter is removed (24-48 hours after surgery), you may feel burning
when you urinate, the need to urinate often or an urgent need to urinate. These
feelings should go away in a few days.
You will do clean intermittent catheterization (CIC) after you go home. The
length of time you will need to do this will vary. Before you leave the hospital,
your nurses will help you to learn how to do this for yourself. Your nurses will
teach you how long you will need to do this and how know when it is okay to
stop. Please bring a handheld mirror with you on your surgery day. You will
be given a handout with instructions for CIC.
You can expect some vaginal drainage or spotting.
Keep a dry dressing over the abdominal incision until the drainage stops. The
dressing should be changed at least once a day or more often if needed. Your
nurse will show you how to change the dressing before you go home. You will be
given the supplies to use at home. You will have thin tape called Steri-Strips over
the incision when you go home. They will begin to loosen at the edges after one
week. You may remove them at that time.
Do not lift more than 10 pounds (1 gallon of milk) for 4 weeks.
Do not drive a car for 2 weeks or while you take prescription pain medicine.
Nothing in the vagina for 1 month (e.g. tampons and douches). Sexual
intercourse can be resumed after 1 month.
You may shower after 2 days
The length of time needed before you can return to work depends on your
recovery and the type of work you do. This is usually about 3-4 weeks. Be
sure to check with your doctor about when you can return to work and start
doing more strenuous activities.
You will have a follow-up visit in the Urology Clinic 1-2 weeks after your surgery.
When to Call the Doctor
Call your doctor if you have any concerns or notice any of these symptoms:
Incision becomes red, tender or swollen
Pus-like drainage occurs
Temperature is above 100 θ F (by mouth) taken two times 4 hours apart.
Blood in your urine
UW Health Urology 608-263-4757
UW Health at The American Center Urology 608-440-6464
UW Health One South Park Urology 608-287-2900
After Hours, Nights, Weekends, and Holidays, the clinic number is answered by the paging
operator. Ask for the Urology Doctor on call. Leave your name and phone number with the area
code. The doctor will call you back.
Toll Free: 1-844-607-4800
Your medical record number is ______________________
The Spanish version of this Health Facts for You is #7039
Your health care team may have given you this information as part of your care. If so, please use it and call if you
have any questions. If this information was not given to you as part of your care, please check with your doctor. This
is not medical advice. This is not to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Because each
person’s health needs are different, you should talk with your doctor or others on your health care team when using
this information. If you have an emergency, please call 911. Copyright © 7/2015 University of Wisconsin Hospitals
and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#5921