If you're worried about waiting too long for the nurse to come with pain meds, know that you can administer drugs to yourself when you're in the hospital with a method called patient-controlled analgesia, or PCA. You control the amount of the drug that enters your body through an IV.
Importantly, don't leave the hospital or outpatient facility without a clear assurance that you'll be able to control any pain you might encounter—and if that means taking home a big supply of the right pain medications, don't leave without them. It will speed your recovery.
Ask your surgeon or doctor which variety of drugs will work best for you. And don't be afraid to take the painkillers if you need them; biting a stick went out with the Conestoga wagons.
Find out more about this book:YOU: The Smart Patient: An Insider's Handbook for Getting the Best Treatment