Ben Franklin once shared the wise words, “by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” This motivational quote refers to any number of things, and believe it or not, joint replacement surgery too. Let’s see how being well prepared and the dos and don’ts before joint replacement surgery apply as well.
Preparing Your Body for Knee or Hip Replacement Surgery
The right preparations set you up for success and a smooth recovery. Strengthening and conditioning your body before surgery can help you recover quicker. Strengthening your upper body can make it easier to use assistive devices like crutches and wheelchairs.
Choose low impact exercises to strengthen your body and joints. Yoga, swimming, using a stationary bike, and Tai Chi will help you to manage the pain and improve muscle strength, endurance, and range of motion after surgery.
Preparing for Post-Surgery Rehab
Talk with OrthoNY about whether you will be required to move to a rehab facility before going home to recover. If that is the case, begin to search for convenient places well before surgery. Let your care team know, verify insurance coverage, and get a referral if needed.
Preparing Your Home
Once you come home to recover, everything should be in place. You can identify needs well before surgery and purchase or rent some helpful aids.
- Get an attachment to place over your toilet to raise the height.
- Arrange sleeping accommodations. If your bedroom is on the second floor, rent a bed or purchase a sofa/bed. Some insurances may cover this, so inquire well in advance.
- Get a shower seat and install grab bars near the tub and toilet to prevent falls.
- Remove tripping hazards like throw rugs, cords, and pet beds.
- A cart on wheels is a great help during surgery recovery. It can easily be moved and can hold your essentials: medications, cell phone, TV remote, glasses, water glass and box of tissues.
- Have a cold pack on hand.
Some Classic Don’ts Before Joint Replacement Surgery
Don’t make any drastic changes to your diet or exercise which could induce injury.
Don’t wait too long to have your surgery. Procrastinating until you are in severe pain can affect your recovery.
Don’t think you can do this alone. There should be someone with you 24/7 at least during the first week you are home.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Don’t refrain from calling OrthoNY if something feels wrong or if your pain becomes worse.