How well does this surgery work for someone my age and with any of the medical problems I may have?
As with all medical procedures, your personal medical history is considered by your physician and your individual needs are determined in part by your lifestyle and your medical history. All patients are required to complete a medical clearance prior to surgery and will have a medical doctor following their care while a patient in the hospital.
Is there anything that I can do before the surgery so it will be more successful for me?
Actually, yes. You’ll receive a list of “PREHAB” exercises in your pre-operative education class. These will help condition you and will make rehab easier for you. If you are currently seeing a physical therapist, you can ask them to develop an exercise routine for you so you can strengthen your upper extremities, which are key to assisting you in getting up from a sitting position and ambulating. Certain isometric exercises target the muscle groups that will be affected during your surgery such as ankle pumps, gluteal and quadriceps sets. These exercises require little or no weight bearing.
How do I get to the bathroom after surgery? Would I have a catheter in my bladder?
All activities must be completed with assistance of our trained nursing and rehabilitation staff to ensure your safety. Your Foley catheter will be discontinued as soon as you are comfortable to using the bathroom facility, but no later than 2 days after surgery.
Will I be able to walk after surgery? How far?
Early ambulation is encouraged after surgery. You will be assisted in sitting on the bed and dangling your legs the night of surgery. You will be walking with assistance the morning after your surgery. By discharge, our goals for your ambulation are 85 feet.
What type of anesthesia will be used? Are there choices to consider?
Regional nerve blocks are used to numb the area undergoing surgery combined with intravenous medications that will allow you to sleep during the surgery. If you are not a candidate for this type of nerve block due to your medical history, then general anesthesia will be used. This commonly occurs with patients who have had spinal stenosis or lumbar spine surgery.
Will I be in a lot of pain after surgery? What will be done to relieve the pain?
Joint replacement is surgery and post-surgical pain is normal and expected. However, we have a dedicated pain management team to address each patient’s individual needs and we use use the latest evidence based practices to minimize pain for our patients. We utilize a multi- modal approach that targets your pain from every angle utilizing numbing agents in nerve blocks, anti-inflammatory medications, while minimizing the use of narcotics.
How long do I need to be in the hospital?
The length of stay following a joint replacement ranges from two to three days.
Will I be able to do activities, such as golf, swimming, tennis, or hiking? When can I do them?
You will be able to resume the activities you love as soon as your surgeon clears you. Depending on your individual healing time and rehabilitation progress, this can range from 6 weeks to 6 months after surgery.
Will I need home medical or assistive equipment?
Depending on your current strength, mobility and the type of surgery you had, you may require a walker or cane, a raised toilet seat or commode, a shower chair and a continuous passive motion machine.
Will I need physical therapy after I leave the hospital?
There is a designated case manager that can assist you to explore your options for care after discharge including home care, inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation services.
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