Before Surgery                                                       
  • Q: Are there any medicines I need to take before surgery?

    It is recommended that patients take an iron supplement prior to surgery particularly if you will be donating your own blood. These upplements may be purchased at any drugstore or recommended by your family physician.

  • Q: How long will I be in the hospital?

    For joint replacement surgery, most patients are hospitalized 4 days, including the day of surgery. This may vary if the patient is either going to a rehabilitation center, a sub-acute facility, or not cleared medically or surgically for discharge home.

    PLEASE BE ADVISED Most insurance covers 3-4 days of acute care in the hospital for total knee replacement surgery. Some insurances do provide for further care in several other types of facilities. It is advisable for each patient to contact their health insurance provider for specific programs covered and to obtain these provisions in writing.

  • Q: May I talk with someone before surgery to discuss my concerns?

    The orthopaedic surgery patients are followed throughout their experience by a case manager. This is an R.N. who is familiar with our routines and procedures. However, if you still have any questions please do not hesitate to to call our office at 517.487.3717

  • Q: Can my family stay with me during this time?

    Families may stay with patients until the patient is taken to the operating room.

  • Q: When should I arrive at the hospital for my surgery?

    Patients are requested to arrive at the hospital 2 HOURS prior to the scheduled surgery time. This allows time for you to go through the admission process, change into hospital clothing, meet the anesthesiologist and nursing personnel who will be with you during your surgery, and get any questions pertaining to this process answered.

    PLEASE BE ADVISED You should have nothing by mouth from midnight on the day of your surgery. In some cases you may be allowed to take a medication the morning of surgery. If this is the case, you should take the medication with the least amount of water necessary. Report
    to the admitting nurse any medications (and dosage) you may have taken.

  • Q: What should I bring to the hospital?

    All patients should bring with them personal toiletries and shaving gear, loose fitting COMFORTABLE clothing; non-skid shoes or slippers (slip-on type with closed back preferred), a list of their current medications (including dosages), and any paperwork the hospital may have requested.

    PLEASE BE ADVISED The hospital provides pajamas, gowns, robes, slipper socks, and a small toiletries supply. Most patients, however, do supplement these with the articles outlined above, at least in terms of toiletries. In addition, if you have an assistive device that you plan to use after discharge (i.e. walker, cane, crutches) but are not currently using, you should have someone bring this in prior to discharge so the physical therapist can check to assure that it is the adequate size for you. DO NOT BRING radios, TV's, or large amounts of cash.

  • Q: Are there any medicines I need to stop taking before surgery?

    Most medications may be taken up to the day of surgery. If you are currently taking an anti-inflammatory medication containing aspirin, this should be discontinued two weeks prior to surgery unless you are instructed otherwise by your physician. These medications tend to act as blood thinners and this is the reason for recommending discontinuing them. Blood thinning medications such as Coumadin or aspirin are also
    discontinued prior to surgery. However, the exact times of discontinuing these medications are made on an individualized basis and should be checked with your personal physician for the correct method regarding this.

  • Q: Will I need to donate blood before surgery?

    Some surgeries do require the patient to donate blood if possible. If your physician requests blood donation, this can be done any time within 35 days of the surgical date. The number of units that can be donated prior to surgery will be discussed with the patient by their physician. When units of blood are donated, the patient's blood levels are monitored prior to each donation in order to assure the patient's safety. If the patient cannot donate his or her own blood, a designated donor, usually a family member or relative, may donate blood for the patient. This is done through the Red Cross Blood Donor Centers and the units
    then transported to the hospital for the patient's use. If a patient is unable to donate blood and there is no designated donor, the patient will receive blood from the hospital Blood Bank if necessary. The hospital follows universal guidelines in screening blood and blood products to ensure the patient's safety as much as possible in this situation.

  • Q: What kinds of tests will I need before surgery?

    All patients are required to have routine blood work and urinalysis performed. These tests cannot be performed prior to 14 days before the scheduled surgery in order to be acceptable. In addition all patients are required to have a physical examination which can be performed at any time within 30 days of the surgical date. Patients over the age of 50 are required to have an EKG and chest x-ray performed within 30 days of the surgical date. Patients below the age of 50 with any cardiac or respiratory history may also be required to have these tests performed. Most pre-admission testing and physical evaluations can be performed either by the patient's personal physician or at the hospital where the procedure will be performed.

    PLEASE BE ADVISED that if an abnormal exam or test result is reported, you may need a further evaluation or repeat testing performed. This does not necessarily mean surgery is canceled, but for your own safety, further investigation of any abnormalities is the standard procedure.

Day of Surgery                                                       
  • Q: Will the surgeon see my family immediately after surgery is completed?

    Whenever possible, the surgeon or one of his assisting surgeons will meet with family members immediately after surgery. If for any reason the family misses seeing the surgeon, they should contact his office the next day and all efforts will be made to arrange a time for the surgeon and family to discuss the patient's surgery.

  • Q: How long will the surgery take?

    Depending upon the difficulty of your case, the surgery may take several hours. In general, you should expect 2-3 hours in surgery and 2-3 hours in the recovery room.

  • Q: What type of anesthesia will I have?

    Most of our cases are performed under spinal anesthesia. We feel this is the safest anesthesia for you and unless there is a recommendation from the anesthesiologist, this is the method preferred. You will be meeting with the anesthesiologist on the day of surgery and at that time any questions or concerns
    regarding this will be addressed.