Might I have decreased lung capacity nearly 3 weeks after anesthesia?
I had surgery under general anesthesia in August for rectal prolapse repair and hemorrhoidectomy, surgery for colostomy in September with spinal anesthesia. About 3 weeks ago I had a rectal exam under general anesthesia as an outpatient procedure. I was awakened and sent home a few hours later. My voice this time was very hoarse and low-pitched. I did start coughing up a lot of phlegm that day and nearly all the next day. My lungs felt less congested each time I would bring something up but by the end of that second day, the coughing stopped and my voice was getting less hoarse. However, I still feel as though I have decreased lung capacity and I wish I could cough to bring up more phlegm. After my first and second surgeries, nursing staff had me use a device to measure and exercise my lungs to avoid pneumonia and I didn't feel this sort of tightness. I don't know if the first surgery under general anesthesia was different than what was used at this last procedure but I wasn't under for very long, I don't think. Is it common to have this somewhat tight feeling in your lungs this long after anesthesia? I don't feel ill and don't have a temperature. I'm not a smoker since 1990.