Will it hurt?

The short answer is yes. But this pain will be different than the chronic arthritic pain that will never go away. The pain you feel after surgery is post-operative pain. It is important for you to communicate with the medical team and use medicine and ice to keep your pain under control. When you work with therapy, pain may increase, but remember: “Its hurtful, not harmful.” As your joint heals, the pain will improve, and you will be able to do the things you love to do.  

How long will I be in the hospital?

Typically patients spend one or two night in the hospital. Most patients go home the day after surgery.

What type of anesthesia will I get?

Unless it is contraindicated, we use spinal anesthesia for our total joint replacement surgeries. According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, spinal anesthesia is the Gold Standard. 

How will I be getting around after surgery?

Mobility starts the day of surgery. We will get you up and moving with a walker and will continue using that for about the first 1-2 weeks before transitioning to a cane and then to nothing at all. It is important to make sure that before you move off the walker or the cane, that you are able to walk without a limp. This will prevent injury. 

Will I be able to do steps when I get home?

If you were able to do steps before surgery, and you are having a single joint replacement, then yes, you will likely be able to do stairs after surgery. You will be relying on your non-operated leg to do most of the work while your surgical joint heals. Your physical therapist will teach you how to go up and down the steps safely.

Will I have to go to rehab or can I go home after surgery?

Our goal is to get every patient home after surgery and our skilled team of therapists will make sure you can do that. Most patients do go home, but it all depends on how much you moved before surgery, your home support and your overall health. If you and the therapist do not believe it is safe to go home, then a short rehab stay may be recommended.

When will I be able to drive again?

Patients are typically cleared by their surgeon to drive in 4-6 weeks. It depends on whether your driving leg was operated on and if you are still taking narcotic pain medication. 

How long is the recovery?

Your recovery time is affected by a number of different factors, but for most patients, they feel about 80% better 10 weeks after surgery. It takes about the rest of the year to make up the last 20%. It is important to remember that this surgery is elective, and you truly get out of it what you put into it. We encourage you to participate in therapy and do your exercises.