Once surgery has been discussed and decided upon it is important for you to know what to expect and to have a plan to help you get the best possible result afterwards. Understanding what you can do after surgery to maximise the result will help you greatly in your recovery.

Before surgery your doctor will give you a physical examination and make sure you have no medical conditions or take any medications that may interfere with your planned surgery. Make sure you discuss any such issues before surgery so if necessary you can be reviewed by other doctors who may need to review you before your surgery. They may also need to stop certain medications that may interfere with your surgery.

You may also have routine blood tests and X Rays organised a week or two before surgery (and possibly a cross match taken for more involved procedures if there is the possibility that you may need to be given blood during or after surgery).


Specific things you should consider

Warfarin/Clopodigrel (Anticoagulants)
You will need to stop this medication in consultation with your doctor who may need to make special arrangements with you. Usually 5 days pre-surgery for Warfarin and 2 weeks for Clopodigrel (Plavix)

Aspirin/ Anti-Inflammatory medications
You will need to stop taking these 1 week prior to surgery to minimise any bleeding problems related to the surgery.

If you suffer any infections (eg ingrown toenail, tooth or gum infection) it is important to report them as early as possible to your surgeon as surgery may not be safely performed until such things have cleared up fully.

If you smoke then cutting down or stopping around the time of surgery will decrease the risks of surgery and anaesthesia and promote quicker healing post operatively.

Other Health Issues
If you need any procedures for tooth and gum conditions, prostate, bladder or bowel problems you should try to have them attended to before your planned major orthopaedic surgery to minimise the risk infection afterwards.


See also