Thank you for choosing Ridgeview's Center for Joint Replacement. Our staff of trained professionals is dedicated to helping you have a great experience throughout your entire stay here. We will be with you every step of the way!
The following is a description of what you can expect while you are at the Center for Joint Replacement at Ridgeview:
What to Expect on the Day of Surgery
On the Pre-Op unit, you will be prepared for surgery; this will include starting an IV and scrubbing your operative site. Your operating room nurse and anesthesiologist will meet with you. You can discuss your anesthesia options with the anesthesiologist at this time. You will meet with your surgeon and sign a consent form, as well.
Following surgery, you will be taken to a recovery area where you will remain for about an hour. During this time, pain control will be established, your vital signs will be monitored and an X-ray may be taken of your new joint. You will then be taken to the Center for Joint Replacement where a total joint nurse will care for you. Only one or two very close family members or friends should visit you this day.
Most of the discomfort occurs the first 12 hours following surgery, so during this time you will receive pain medication through your IV. During the first day, you will probably remain in bed and begin ankle pumps, which will help prevent blood clots from forming in your legs. You should also begin using your Incentive Spirometer to help expand your lungs and prevent fluid from collecting. Starting today, you will receive a daily newsletter outlining each day’s activities.
Day 1 After Surgery
On the day after surgery, nursing and rehab staff will help get you up and going early in the morning. An occupational therapist will help you learn how to use adaptive equipment and techniques for bathing and dressing in the loose-fitting clothing you brought to the hospital. Shorts and shirts are usually best; long pants are too restrictive. You’ll be up and in a recliner, ready for breakfast by 7:30 a.m.
A physical therapist will assess your progress and help you use a walker. IV pain medication will be stopped and you will begin oral pain medication. In the afternoon, group therapy will begin. Your coach is encouraged to be present as much as possible during this time. Visitors are welcome, preferably in the late afternoons and evenings.
Day 2 After Surgery
On the second day after surgery, you will be able to do more activities by yourself. Nursing and rehab staff will help you practice more independence and make sure you can dress yourself when it’s time to go home.
At approximately 8:30 a.m., your day will begin with a morning walk with your physical therapist. Group therapy will start afterwards. At noon on Day 2, you will have a buffet lunch with other patients, your coach and the nursing staff. (Lunch is offered to your coach at no charge.) Right after lunch, we’ll begin some of your discharge teaching, making sure that you and your coach are prepared to go home. At about 1 p.m. you will have a second group therapy session.
We encourage your coach to come for as much of Day 2 as he or she can. We cover a lot of information and practice stairs, transfers and other activities that you will be doing at home.
Evenings are open for friends and family to visit.
Day 3 After Surgery
The morning of the third day after surgery is similar to the second day. You will have physical therapy at 8:30 am. and will have a final chance to practice stairs, curbs and transfers. You will get one-on-one instruction on medications from nursing staff and then be discharged before lunch.
If You’re Going Directly Home
Someone responsible needs to drive you if you're going home. You will receive written discharge instructions concerning medications, physical therapy, activity, etc. We will arrange for any equipment that you need.
Most knee replacement patients start going to outpatient physical therapy a day or two after they go home. Hip replacement patients will continue their home exercise program without outpatient physical therapy until their movement restrictions are lifted 6 to 8 weeks after surgery.
The Joint Center Coordinator can help you schedule your therapy. If you require home health services, we will arrange this for you, as well.