Childhood Cancer

Your Child in the Hospital

The recovery room

Some hospitals allow parents into the recovery room, others do not. Find out the hospital’s policy and explain this to your child prior to surgery so your child will know what to expect upon awakening. Whether you meet your child in the recovery room or later, comfort him any way you can: hold his hand, rock him, sing songs, play music, watch TV, or read him a book.

Charley was groggy after the surgery and very uncomfortable. I told the nurse, and they gave him some pain medication and then he smiled for the first time. We were in the recovery room for a couple of hours before they moved him upstairs. He didn’t want to listen to music or look at books, so I climbed in the bed and we just cuddled.

If you are going home after the surgery, your child will stay in the recovery room until the staff says she is awake enough to leave (e.g., when she can sip water or eat a Popsicle®). If your child is going to stay in the hospital after surgery, he will be wheeled up to his room after the recovery room staff says it’s safe to go.