Head and Neck Surgery

Return to normal activities

It takes 7-10 days for most people to recover from surgery. The neck can remain sore for a further week or two as the wound heals.

You will need to stay home from work or school for at least 10 days following surgery.

General activities can be resumed when you feel up to it. Please avoid active sports, exercise and heavy lifting for 4 weeks.

Pain relief

You will experience some pain and discomfort for up to 1-2 weeks following surgery.  Ear pain, jaw pain and neck pain may occur. This can be improved with pain relief but may not entirely disappear. During this time, it is recommended you take some regular pain relief.


Please seek advice if pain relief measures are inadequate.


In most cases, antibiotics given at the time of your operation are adequate and no further antibiotics are needed. In certain circumstances they will, however, be necessary. If prescribed, then please take as directed.


There are usually no restrictions on diet. You should drink as much as needed to avoid dehydration. 


It is common to have a mild fever for the first 24hrs after the operation.  Please call Dr Morrissey’s rooms if there is a persistent fever greater than 38.5°C.

Neck Swelling

Mild swelling of the neck and region of the incision is common following surgery. It will be tender to touch.

Please contact Dr Morrissey if you experience any of the following:


Dr Morrissey typically uses dissolving sutures. In circumstances where sutures or staples have been used, they are typically removed 7-10 days after surgery.

Facial Weakness

Following surgery to the Parotid gland and Submandibular gland, there may be some weakness of the facial muscles. In the majority of cases this recovers in 2-3 weeks following surgery. However, in some instances recovery can take up to 12 months.

Dr Morrissey can discuss the particulars of your surgery and the prognosis of any weakness you experience should it occur.

Follow Up Appointment

Please make an appointment 1-2 weeks after surgery.

How to contact Dr Morrissey

For non-emergency issues please call 07 4646 4275 for further instructions.

Dr Morrissey shares ‘on-call’ arrangements with other ENT surgeons and one is usually available to answer questions. After hours the "On Call" ENT surgeon can be contacted via the Toowoomba Base Hospital on (07) 4616 6000.

Should your concerns not be addressed via a phone call please present to your nearest Emergency Department.

In the event of an Emergency call 000 or attend the nearest Emergency Department.