Preparing for surgery

Things you can do:

  • Stop smoking: Smoking is strongly associated with infection following joint surgery. Stopping obviously also has many other more important health benefits as well.
  • Keep weight under control: Maintaining a healthy weight reduces the risk of infection and other complications following joint replacement surgery. It also may reduce the pain felt from the arthritic joint.
  • Heath check: As part of the preparation for your hip replacement you will go through a pre-assessment health check with both Mr Webb and the nursing staff to ensure you are safe to proceed with surgery. In addition you should ensure that any long term conditions you may have (e.g. diabetes) are under good control. You should consult your GP about these conditions prior to surgery.
  • Avoid alcohol for 48 hours prior to your surgery.

Home preparations:

The pre-operative assessment team includes nurses, physiotherapists and occupational therapists. They will ask for details regarding your home set-up to help you plan for your recovery from the surgery.

  • They will ask you for information about your type of residence, number and type of stairs, bathrooms, height of chairs and beds.
  • They will advise you if any changes are required in order to make your recovery safer and will provide you with the appropriate mobility and activities of daily living aids; they may recommend a raised toilet seat, a sock-aid, grabber and a chair raise, for example.
  • They will advise you on setting up a recovery hub in your home. This should be based around a comfortable chair with a phone, reading material, television, tablet and medication all within easy reach.
  • They will also encourage you to try plan your meals ahead of time and consider grocery deliveries during your convalescence.

Final preparation:

  • Have a shower or bath on the day before surgery and moisturize your skin.
  • Avoid hair removal or shaving in the area of your body where the surgery will take place. This will be performed in the operating theatre by the surgeon in order to reduce the risk of infection.
  • Have a bag packed for your hospital stay. This should include:
    • Dressing gown and comfortable pyjamas
    • Slippers
    • Washbag and toiletries
    • Comfortable change of clothes and footwear
    • Your usual medications
  • Arrange for a family member or friend to support you after you are discharged from hospital.