What to Expect in The Weeks Prior to Surgery
Preparing for total hip replacement begins weeks before the actual surgery. It's important to be in the best possible health prior to your hip replacement as it may help you during the recovery process. The checklist below outlines some tasks that your surgeon may ask you to complete in the weeks prior to your surgery date.

How to Prepare for Hip Replacement

  • Exercise under your doctor's supervision
  • Have a general physical examination
  • Have a dental examination
  • Review medications
  • Stop smoking
  • Lose weight
  • Arrange a pre-operative visit
  • Get laboratory tests
  • Complete forms
  • Prepare meals
  • Confer with a physical therapist
  • Plan for post-surgery rehabilitative care
  • Fast the night before
  • Bathe surgical area with antiseptic solution
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What to Expect on the Day of Surgery
Every hospital has its own particular procedures. Make sure you discuss any procedures they may have in place. However, hip replacement patients may expect their day-of-surgery experience to follow this basic routine:

What to Expect the Day of Surgery

  • Arrive at the hospital at the appointed time
  • Complete the admission process
  • Final pre-surgery assessment of vital signs and general health
  • Final meeting with anesthesiologist and operating room nurse
  • Start IV (intravenous) catheter for administration of fluids and antibiotics
  • Transportation to the operating room
  • Joint replacement surgery
  • Transportation to a recovery room
  • Ongoing monitoring of vital signs until condition is stabilized
  • Transportation to individual hospital room
  • Ongoing monitoring of vital signs and surgical dressing
  • Orientation to hospital routine
  • Evaluation by physical therapist
  • Diet of clear liquids or soft foods, as tolerated
  • Begin post-op activities taught during pre-op visit
Talk to Your Doctor
Like any surgery, joint replacement surgery has serious risks. Your surgeon can explain all the possible complications of the surgery, as well as side effects in greater detail. Some of the potential risks and complications can be seen in a multicenter study conducted in California from 1995-2005; the complication rate postoperatively in the first 90 days was 3.8%.² Nevertheless, as with any major surgical procedure, patients who undergo hip replacement are at risk for certain complications.

Surgery is a difficult decision. You should talk with your doctor to better understand the risks and complications before making the decision to undergo total hip replacement; but consider that a study has shown that better outcomes have been reported in those patients who had a total joint operation earlier in their disease process.³ Two years after their operation, patients who chose surgery earlier in the disease process had improved function and reduced pain compared to those who waited.³
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IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT HIP AND KNEE REPLACEMENT

Hip joint replacement is intended for use in individuals with joint disease resulting from degenerative and rheumatoid arthritis, avascular necrosis, fracture of the neck of the femur or functional deformity of the hip.

Knee joint replacement is intended for use in individuals with joint disease resulting from degenerative, rheumatoid and post-traumatic arthritis, and for moderate deformity of the knee. Joint replacement surgery is not appropriate for patients with certain types of infections, any mental or neuromuscular disorder which would create an unacceptable risk of prosthesis instability, prosthesis fixation failure or complications in postoperative care, compromised bone stock, skeletal immaturity, severe instability of the joint, or excessive body weight.

Like any surgery, joint replacement surgery has serious risks which include, but are not limited to, pain, bone fracture, change in the treated leg length (hip), joint stiffness, hip joint fusion, amputation, peripheral neuropathies (nerve damage), circulatory compromise (including deep vein thrombosis (blood clots in the legs)), genitourinary disorders (including kidney failure), gastrointestinal disorders (including paralytic ileus (loss of intestinal digestive movement)), vascular disorders (including thrombus (blood clots), blood loss, or changes in blood pressure or heart rhythm), bronchopulmonary disorders (including emboli, stroke or pneumonia), heart attack, and death.

Implant related risks which may lead to a revision of the implant include dislocation, loosening, fracture, nerve damage, heterotopic bone formation (abnormal bone growth in tissue), wear of the implant, metal sensitivity, soft tissue imbalance, osteolysis (localized progressive bone loss), audible sounds during motion, and reaction to particle debris.

The information presented is for educational purposes only. Speak to your doctor to decide if joint replacement surgery is appropriate for you. Individual results vary and not all patients will return to the same activity level. The lifetime of any joint replacement is limited and depends on several factors like patient weight and activity level. Your doctor will counsel you about strategies to potentially prolong the lifetime of the device, including avoiding high-impact activities, such as running, as well as maintaining a healthy weight. It is important to closely follow your physician’s instructions regarding post-surgery activity, treatment and follow-up care.

Ask your doctor if a joint replacement is right for you.

Stryker Corporation or its other divisions or other corporate affiliated entities own, use or have applied for the following trademarks or service marks: GetAroundKnee, Mako, Mobile Bearing Hip, Stryker, Together with our customers, we are driven to make healthcare better. All other trademarks are trademarks of their respective owners or holders.

Stryker is a sponsor of the PGA TOUR. Hal Sutton and Fred Funk are paid spokespersons of Stryker, and their statements represent their personal views based on their personal experiences.

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References

  1. Arthritis Foundation website, www.arthritistoday.org/about-arthritis/arthritis-and-your-health/obesity/fat-and-arthritis.php, accessed January 2015.
  2. Nelson, F., et al., "Factors That Predict Short-term Complication Rates After Total Hip Arthroplasty." CORR, 468(9)L pp2363-2371.
  3. Hanssen, A.D., et al., “Evaluation and Treatment of Infection at the Site of Total Hip or Knee Arthroplasty,” JBJS, Volume. 80-A, No. 6, June 1998, pp. 910-922.
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