Recovering from Orthopaedic Surgery

Prior to discharge from the hospital you will receive from the physical therapy department instructions for your discharge exercise program and have all of your assistive devices you will need immediately during your recovery process.

In order to prevent blood clot formation you will be placed on a blood thinner (most often aspirin twice per day). You will continue to take the assigned blood thinner for approximately 6 weeks after surgery.

You will notice that by day two or three after surgery your incision should be healing well. We do NOT typically use staples for knee closures but may for hip surgeries if needed. Most often we will use an absorbable suture to close a majority of your incisions.

When you go home you may still have some clear discharge or yellow drainage (serous drainage). This is not an indication of any type of infection but rather a part of the healing process as the tissue below the skin heals.

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This may continue for one to five days after surgery. You may shower with an occlusive bandage on your incision once you get home. Once you have showered and dried off and remove the old dressing and replace with a new occlusive dressing. Please avoid baths/soaking for six weeks after surgery.

Research shows patients recover faster from home.

Research, as well as experience with our past patients, has shown increased recovery times when discharging HOME. Our discharge team will make certain you have needed equipment and resources to recover in your home.

Once you are home we require that you use a walker for ambulation for safety and stability. As patients progress, approximately 6 weeks after surgery most patients may transition to a single prong cane with the direction of your physical therapist or Dr. Moore.

Dr. Moore will discharge patients with a prescription for mild narcotic pain medication but you should be requiring less medication as you progress. You should moderate your activities to reduce the amount of stress that is put on the incision and muscles after surgery. This is the best way to manage your pain after discharge. It is still common to have leg swelling, especially if you are becoming more active at home. If your entire leg becomes swollen around the ankle or foot level this amount of swelling may be more concerning. If this occurs, please lessen the time sitting but increase time lying down on a bed or couch with the leg elevated as well as contact the office so that we may further evaluate.

It is important to monitor closely the healing process for the first three to six months following your surgery. Dr. Moore will see you in follow up approximately two weeks, six weeks, six months and one year after surgery. After the first year you will be seen on a yearly basis unless you have a concern before your scheduled appointment. As always if you have any concerns please contact our office for assistance, we are more than happy to help.

Patients with a knee or hip replacement can develop infections of the joint in special circumstances. Any infection you might acquire in any other part of your body could potentially spread to your replaced joint. As a result, antibiotics should be taken before certain types of medical treatments; urological, dental and colonoscopy procedures. We have a prepared instruction sheet that is apart of your educational packets providing this this information. Dr. Moore prefers that patients avoid these procedures until three months after your surgery if possible. If you plan to have any of these procedures please contact our office nurse, Vickie, and she will assist you in getting the necessary prescription.

Our office understands you may need documentation of your surgical procedures as they most often will trigger metal detectors to alarm. To assist in you we will provide a card that indicates your surgery for documentation purposes. This card will be give to you after surgery.

Dr. Moore’s surgical patients are encouraged to use our Healthloop program to provide an outstanding experience with the best possible outcomes. Patients use their smart phone or computer to check in online for daily guidance and reminders all without picking up the phone. We know your time is very important so we are happy to help and avoid hold times as well as voice mails. The program enables Dr. Moore’s team to stay connected to you throughout your surgical journey.

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