Once you and Dr. DeClaire decide that surgery will help you, you will need to learn what to expect from the surgery and create a treatment plan for the best results afterward. Preparing mentally and physically for surgery is an essential step toward a successful result. Understanding the process and your role will help you recover more quickly and have fewer problems.
Below, you will find information and resources about surgery, post-op care, patient education, insurance and answers to question you may have.
Preparing for Surgery
Working with Your Surgeon
Before surgery, your doctor will perform a complete physical examination to ensure you don’t have any conditions that could interfere with the surgery or thee outcomes.
- Routine tests, such as blood tests and X-rays, are usually performed a week before any major surgery.
- Discuss any medications you are taking with your doctor and your family physician to see which ones you should stop taking before surgery.
- Discuss with your doctor about options for preparing for potential blood replacement, includes donating your blood, medical interventions, and other treatments before surgery.
- If you are overweight, losing weight before surgery will help decrease the stress you place on your new joint. However, it would be best if you did not diet during the month before your surgery.
- If you are taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory medications, or any drugs that increase bleeding risk, stop taking them one week before surgery to minimize bleeding.
- If you smoke, you should stop or cut down to reduce your surgery risks and improve your recovery.
- Have any tooth, gum, bladder or bowel problems treated before surgery to reduce the risk of infection later.
- Eat a well-balanced diet, supplemented by a daily multivitamin with iron.
- Report any infections to your surgeon. If an infection is present, surgery will not be performed until it has cleared up.
- Arrange for someone to help with everyday tasks like cooking, shopping and laundry.
- Put items that you often use within easy reach before surgery, so you won’t have to reach and bend as often.
- Remove all loose carpets and tape down electrical cords to avoid falls.
- Make sure you have a stable chair with a firm seat cushion and back and two arms.
Preparing for Your Procedure
If you are having day surgery remember the following:
- Have someone available to take you home; you will not be able to drive for at least 24 hours.
- Do not drink or eat anything in the car on the trip back home.
- The combination of anesthesia, food, and car motion can quite often cause nausea or vomiting. After arriving home, wait until you are hungry before trying to eat. Begin with a light meal and try to avoid greasy food for the first 24 hours.
- Keep the knee elevated and use ice as directed to help decrease swelling and pain.
- Take your pain medicine as directed. Begin the pain medicine as you start getting uncomfortable, but before you are in severe pain. If you wait to take your pain medication until the pain is severe, you will have more difficulty controlling the pain.
The postoperative recovery period varies based on the surgery. Generally, it is recommended patients take two weeks off work to recover from any surgery and to resume light duty following resumption of work. Your surgeon will give you specific instructions to follow for a successful recovery.