Medical professionals contributed to these answers, but these FAQs are not a substitute for medical advice from your own doctor.
Every hospital has its own procedures, but you may expect to follow this basic routine. Arrive at the hospital at your appointment time and complete the registration and admission process. Your care team will assess your vital signs (like blood pressure and temperature) and your general health. You’ll change into a hospital gown and likely settle into a pre-surgery room. Your anesthesiologist and operating room nurse will come in to talk with you, and the team will start the IV (intravenous) line that will be used to administer fluids and medication. Your family can stay with you until the team wheels you to the operating room where your orthopaedic surgeon and your surgical team will perform your shoulder replacement. After the surgery, you’ll be wheeled into a recovery room where your recovery team will monitor your vital signs until you’re ready for transport to your hospital room. From there, the hospital floor nursing team will continue to monitor your vital signs and your incision site and dressing. You may be surprised how quickly you’ll be evaluated by a physical therapist. The team will get you moving with special post-op activities. You’ll also be allowed to eat and drink as soon as you can tolerate it.
Your doctor wants to make sure you’re healthy and prepared for surgery and recovery. You’ll likely need a physical checkup, routine blood work, and a urine test. If you’re over 50, or have a heart or respiratory issue, you may also need an EKG and a chest X-ray.
Most people spend one to three days in the hospital. Depending on your particular surgery and recovery, your team will help decide what’s best for you. Some people go right home. Typically, your case manager, who assists you before, during, and after your surgery, will help you coordinate your recovery care.
Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing. Most hospitals supply basic toiletries, non-skid socks, and a gown. You’ll want to bring an overnight bag with a few personal toiletries, like shaving supplies and anything that will make you feel more comfortable. (Avoid bringing valuables.) And, be sure to bring a list of your current medications and any paperwork the hospital requested.
Generally, hospitals request that you arrive two hours before your scheduled surgery time. This gives you plenty of time for the admission process, to change into your hospital gown, and to meet the anesthesiologist and nursing team who will be with you during your surgery. It also gives you time to ask questions and settle in.
It is IMPORTANT that you do not eat or drink after midnight the night before your surgery. Sometimes your physician may allow you to take some of your critical daily medication the morning of surgery. Ask your doctor. If this is the case, take the medication with the least amount of water necessary. Tell the admitting nurse if you’ve taken medication.
Surgery time depends on the complexity of each shoulder replacement. In general, expect to spend two hours in surgery and another two to three hours in the recovery room.
You may receive general anesthesia, a regional anesthesia (just numbing the shoulder joint), or a combination of both. Ask your anesthesiologist about the method recommended for you and any other concerns you have.
You’ll be wheeled from recovery into your hospital room on the orthopaedic surgery floor a few hours after surgery. You may still have an IV for fluids and pain medication. The first night you may feel groggy from anesthesia and pain medication, but once you’re fully awake, you’ll be able to eat and drink if you like. Your care team will monitor your vital signs, urinary output, and drainage from the incision site. You may be surprised that your care team will begin getting you out of bed fairly quickly. You’ll likely have both physical and occupational therapy to get you moving. The physical therapist focuses on teaching you exercises and stretches that encourage optimal recovery. The occupational therapist will help you manage your day-to-day routine, like dressing, bathing, and reaching for things.
Typically, your doctor or one of the assisting surgeons will come out to the waiting area to talk with your family as soon as you’ve been taken into the recovery room. If the family misses seeing the surgeon, they should contact the office. Your doctor’s office will arrange a time for your surgeon to discuss your surgery with your family.
Doctors make rounds daily to see their patients whenever possible. Twice a day, the orthopaedic residents or physician assistants will also monitor your progress and make any changes to your care schedule to ensure you’re comfortable. In addition to your doctor and a resident or physician assistant, your case manager will meet with you (and family members, if necessary) in order to ensure the most appropriate discharge plan for you.
It all depends on you and your recovery process. Most people go home one to three days after surgery.
You will be sent home with your arm in a sling. You will play a large role in how well you recover. Follow your orthopaedic surgeon’s instructions for at home care. Be patient. If you have any concerns at all – call your doctor. Your case manager will check up on you in the first few days to ask you a few questions and see how you’re doing. If you have questions or concerns, your case manager will be eager to hear them and assist you.
Your doctor will likely give you a list of dos and don’ts. Follow them. Keep your incision site dry. Don’t engage in any activity that requires you to push or pull with that arm. Don’t push yourself up from a chair, for example. Don’t lift anything heavier than a half a pound and do not drive for two to four weeks.1 Be patient. Follow the exercises your doctor provided.
The incision along your shoulder may have been closed with staples on top of the skin or sutures underneath the skin. Staples will be removed in your doctor’s office during your follow-up visit. Sutures will dissolve overtime as your shoulder heals. Avoid getting the area wet and follow your doctor’s instructions for changing the bandage, if necessary.
Most people return to their light day-to-day activities (grooming, dressing, eating) within two weeks while wearing a sling,1 but everyone is different. Your doctor will help determine a plan best suited for your recovery and your lifestyle.
Most folks who’ve had shoulder replacement need a short course of medication to manage their pain. You may only need the medication at night or before physical therapy. Talk with your doctor about what to expect.
If your doctors allows, you may be able to drive in two to four weeks following surgery.1 Depending on which shoulder was replaced and how you’re recuperating, your doctor may have other recommendations. Consult your physician.
You may feel like getting outdoors, but talk with your doctor first. Let your safety and comfort be your guide. With someone else driving you, start with short trips, like to outpatient physical therapy appointments or the local supermarket. Increase the length of time you spend outdoors, and the number of trips you take, as you feel more comfortable.
Everyone’s different, but most folks don’t return to work four-week post-op checkup. Talk with your doctor for recommendations based on your job duties, your surgery, and your recovery.1
In a few weeks you’ll be able to pick back up with lower-impact activities like hiking and walking. It will take longer when it comes to activities like swimming, tennis, and aerobics, so talk with your doctor. Any percussive activities (like hammering, drum-playing, or hitting a ball) may be off limits for the length of your recovery.
Content ID: RU-SBO-3, 10-2018
VariAx 2 Wrist Fusion System
Indications: The Stryker VariAx 2 Wrist Fusion System is indicated for wrist arthrodesis and fixation of fractures in patients with wrist arthritis or fractures of other small bones of the carpus. Specific indications include:
Post-traumatic arthritis of the joints of the wrist, Rheumatoid wrist deformities requiring restoration, Complex carpal instability, Post-septic arthritis of the wrist, Severe unremitting wrist pain related to motion, Brachial plexus nerve palsies, Tumor resection, Spastic deformities, Contra-Indications: The physician’s education, training and professional judgment must be relied upon to choose the most appropriate device and treatment.
For all warnings and precautions please refer to the appropriate labeling.
Conditions presenting an increased risk of failure include: Any active or suspected latent infection or marked local inflammation in or about the affected area, Compromised vascularity that would inhibit adequate blood supply to the fracture or the operative site, Bone stock compromised by disease, infection or prior implantation that can not provide adequate support and/or fixation of the devices, Material sensitivity, documented or suspected, Obesity. An overweight or obese patient can produce loads on the implant that can lead to failure of the fixation of the device or to failure of the device itself, Patients having inadequate tissue coverage over the operative site, Implant utilization that would interfere with anatomical structures or physiological performance, Any mental or neuromuscular disorder which would create an unacceptable risk of fixation failure or complications in postoperative care, Other medical or surgical conditions which would preclude the potential benefit of surgery
ReMotion Total Wrist System
Indications: The ReMotion Total Wrist System is intended for replacement of the painful wrist joint due to rheumatoid arthritis, osteo-arthritis, or post-traumatic arthritis.
Contraindications: Bone, musculature, tendons, or adjacent soft tissue compromised by disease, infection, or prior implantation, which cannot provide adequate support or fixation for the prosthesis.
Known sensitivity to materials used in this device. Skeletal Immaturity
The information presented is for educational purposes only. Stryker is not dispensing medical advice. Please speak to your doctor to decide which type of surgery is right for you. Only your doctor can make the medical judgment which products and treatments are right for your own individual condition. As with any surgery, joint replacement surgery carries certain risks. Your surgeon will explain all the possible complications of the surgery, as well as side effects. Additionally, the lifetime of a joint replacement product is not infinite and varies with each individual. Also, each patient will experience a different post-operative activity level, depending on their own individual clinical factors. Your doctor will help counsel you about how to best maintain your activities in order to potentially prolong the lifetime of the device.
Stryker Corporation or its divisions or other corporate affiliated entities own, use or have applied for the following trademarks or service marks: ReMotion, Stryker, T2, Together with our customers, we are driven to make healthcare better, VariAx. All other trademarks are trademarks of their respective owners or holders.