Joint replacement surgery helps you regain a full and active life when medications, physical therapy, and movement modification fail to offer relief from pain, stiffness, and swelling.
Nic Gay, MD, Masi Reynolds, DO, and April Mancuso, MD, of Silicon Valley Orthopaedics, have performed hundreds of joint replacement surgeries for residents in Foster City and Fremont, California. Here’s how they suggest preparing for your upcoming procedure.
Be prepared to provide your insurance coverage and detailed medical history to our team. You’ll need someone available who can drive you to and from the hospital on the day of your surgery and potentially be available in the first days following to help you perform daily tasks.
It also helps to compile a list of any other doctors you see for specific health issues, like diabetes or asthma, so we can reach out to them if necessary. Also, make a list of the medications and supplements you currently take.
When your body is healthy, surgery usually goes more smoothly, and you’re at a lower risk of complications.
Quit smoking because it delays and extends your recovery. If you struggle with weight, try to lose some pounds because the excess weight will stress your new joint. If you drink, don’t consume any alcohol 48 hours before your procedure.
You can also start an exercise program prior to surgery to strengthen muscles that may need to work harder as you recover. A stronger upper body, for example, is better able to support you on crutches or a walker.
Before your surgery is also a good time to get familiar with any physical therapy exercises you’ll need after joint replacement. When you know them in advance, there’s less to learn during healing.
Plan to have someone ready to help you for a few days following your surgery. You may benefit from planning to stay in a rehabilitation facility. We can recommend local centers that support your healing.
Cook extra in advance and freeze some meals or get extra ready-made products, so you don’t have to worry about meal planning. You’ll want to place frequently used items at arm level, so they’re easier to reach.
You may need to modify your bathroom to feature a shower chair and raised toilet seat, especially if you have hip replacement surgery. Talk to us about how to obtain a special parking permit so you can park in handicapped spaces. If you need special gear, like a walker or scooter, get them now before you have to lay low for recovery.
Shower and do not shave before your surgery. We’ll take care of cleaning and shaving the surgical site. We’ll give you thorough instructions that include fasting prior to your procedure. You’ll need to abstain from food and drink after midnight the night before your procedure.
Prepare a bag, especially if you know you’ll spend a night or more at the hospital. That bag may include a robe, comfortable slippers with non-slip soles, reading materials, medications, personal care items, and anything else you need daily.
If you have questions about your upcoming procedure, don’t hesitate to contact us here at Silicon Valley Orthopedics. Call today or use this website to schedule your visit.