Wow, the things I’ve learned lately. In recent years I’ve heard murmurs of and seen a few mentions of pre-emptive pain management for surgical patients. One example is when the dentist gives you instructions to take something 1 hour before your appointment to have a tooth pulled. Last month I was visiting a friend in the hospital after she had a minor surgery when the surgeon visited to follow up with her since she had woken up. He asked her about the incision and if it was painful or uncomfortable. She shrugged and said it was “smooth and mellow” which made everyone laugh. She explained that it didn’t feel stressed, stretched or painful in any way. The surgeon explained that he had put an analgesic into the cavity before closing and that he had put a topical analgesic into the incision as he stitched it up.