With joint replacement surgery, the surgery itself is just one component of the whole process. In order for your surgery to be successful, there are things that you can and should do to be adequately prepared.
It is important to discuss with your family and friends your decision to have surgery and how they may be of assistance to you before, during and after surgery. Some things to consider are:
Research has demonstrated that those individuals who are healthier and more fit before surgery, do better after surgery. Exercise before surgery can take many forms including group classes, pool therapy and individual resistance and cardiovascular programs. For fitness and recreational programs specifically designed for seniors, please visit southwesthealthline.ca for more information.
Many patients can be limited in their ability to participate in fitness programs because of pain. Advice from a physiotherapist or other health care practicitioners may be beneficial in providing you with strategies to manage your pain while trying to remain active. For a list of physiotherapy clinics in your area, please visit southwesthealthline.ca.
Smoking and SurgeryThe benefits of quitting smoking have been well documented, but the benefits for those undergoing surgery can be more so. Those patients who smoke may often have issues with bone and wound healing, breathing problems, infection and are at higher risk of complications such as heart attack, stroke and pneumonia.
Stopping smoking is not easy and many patients need planning, motivation and at times, medication to do so. There are many programs available for patients to assist with smoking cessation and it is important for you to have this discussion with your family physician and surgeon. For more information, please call the Smoker's Helpline at 1-877-513-5333 or visit www.smokershelpline.ca.