As a surgical tech prior to becoming a nurse, maybe I can help with this delimma. Make sure you tell the patient to take the pain medication as directed. Not when she feels pain. If you can get her to understand to take the medicine prior to the pain, it will help her more, than if she waits for the pain to come. That means if you are to take the meds 4-6 hrs prn pain, be sure to take them at least every 4 hrs. If she waits the full 6 hrs or longer, then it will take the medication longer to relieve her pain. Also, teach her to leave her binder on, if the surgeon uses one. This will help with swelling and hopefully some of the pain. Some surgeons tell them to use ice packs on top of the binder. Check with the MD on this one. Tell her that it is going to hurt to breath some, but she must work on deep breathing. Also, get out of bed asap. Right now that is all I can think of. If I think of anything else regarding this subject, I will be sure to let you know. These are only a few important things that the patient should know. Oh, make sure she understands to call her MD if there are any problems, ie. bleeding excessively. Let me know if this helps.