Every time the nurses or doctors came into my daughter’s hospital room, they shuffled through her chart, puzzled.
“Did they forget to mark her oxycodone, her painkillers?” they would ask.
“She hasn’t taken any. She’s doing fine with the ibuprofen,” I would confirm.
“Are you sure? That doesn’t seem right.”
Yet it was perfect. In the days following major bone surgery, my then 15-year-old daughter, Chiara — who gave me permission to share her story — only took one oxycodone pill. Knowing that 6-10% of patients post-surgery end up on long-term use of opioid painkillers, we wanted to stay as far away as possible from an addiction epidemic that is all too real in America. And with the help of an empowering self-managed program, we succeeded. So if you or someone you know ever faces a planned surgery (especially during the time of Covid), tuck away this post, because what you’ll learn could be of measurable and immeasurable help.