A hip replacement can disrupt your life for several months, so you want to know ahead of time what you can expect after the surgery. Your orthopedic surgeon will probably provide you with information you need regarding the surgical procedure and recovery. Here are four things you may want to discuss with your surgeon so you can be fully prepared.
1. Changes You Should Make To Your Lifestyle
All kinds of surgery have risks associated with them, but you can do things to lower your risks. If you have bad lifestyle habits now, talk to your doctor about how they might affect your recovery and what you can do to make changes before you have your operation.
Unless you need emergency surgery, you might have enough time to lose some weight, stop drinking, stop smoking, and adjust supplements and medications that might interfere with your healing.
2. How You Should Prepare Your Home For Recovery
Find out if your doctor plans to discharge you home or to a rehab center after your hip replacement. If you'll be going home, learn what equipment you'll need and how you should prepare your home so you can return to a safe environment with everything already in place.
You might need a wheelchair, bedside commode, walker, or even a hospital bed. You may need to move your bed downstairs and move things around in your kitchen so you can get snacks and drinks easily.
3. What You'll Do About Pain Control
Know what to expect when it comes to pain after your hip replacement. You may be groggy and lethargic after your surgery and not able to think clearly. You'll want to know in advance how you should take pain medication and other drugs needed during your recovery.
Leave yourself notes and have a family member or friend stay with you a few days if you live alone so you have help until you're able to care for yourself independently.
4. How You'll Regain Your Mobility
If you're to be successful with a home recovery, you'll need to follow your orthopedic surgeon's instructions carefully. You don't want to get lax and not do your daily exercises or you may not heal properly. Your surgeon can explain when you'll start moving around in the hospital and what you should be able to do before you can be discharged home.
You'll probably need physical therapy sessions and to also do limited exercises at home that build in intensity as you heal. Your doctor will check your progress during your recovery and let you know when it's safe to walk up and down stairs, swim, go for long walks, and return to your normal daily activities.
For additional tips, reach out to a local orthopedic surgeon.