When you undergo orthopedic surgery, one of the common concerns you may have is about the length of your hospital stay. Your orthopedic surgeon in Phoenix, AZ at Mattalino Orthopaedic will be able to give you specific details relative to your unique situation and health, but the following are some general parameters that can help as you plan.
The duration of hospitalization after orthopedic surgery varies widely and is influenced by the type of surgery you’re undergoing, your overall health, and the speed of your recovery. Typically, procedures like joint replacements, major reconstructive surgeries, or complex spine operations require longer hospital stays.
Factors Influencing Hospital Stay Length
Type of Orthopedic Surgery
The complexity and invasiveness of the procedure are significant determinants. For instance, arthroscopic surgeries tend to have shorter hospital stays, often allowing you to return home the same day. In contrast, an open surgery like a hip or knee replacement often necessitates a stay of several days.
Your Health Status
We consider your general health before surgery, and this will also influence how long you may need to stay in the hospital. Patients with comorbidities such as diabetes or heart conditions may need extended hospitalization. This additional time ensures we can quickly deal with any complexities and monitor your initial recovery phase closely.
Every individual heals differently, and your rate of healing will simply be different from someone else’s. Age, health, immune system strength, and diet and lifestyle habits all influence every person’s healing and recover speed. After your surgery, monitor your post-operative progress, including pain management, wound healing, and mobility. Your ability to perform certain tasks, like walking a specified distance or climbing stairs, often dictates the length of your hospital stay.
Hospital protocols are designed for your safety and may affect the length of your stay. You can be certain, however, that the hospital’s protocols are designed to ensure you are ready to continue recovering at home.
From Your Orthopedic Surgeon in Phoenix, AZ: What to Expect
The following is a very general timeline of what to expect after your surgery. Be aware that all the individual elements mentioned above can influence each of the following:
The First 24 Hours
During the initial hours after surgery, the focus is on pain management, preventing complications, and early mobilization. Our team will guide you through specific exercises to promote circulation and prevent clots. This period is critical in setting the stage for a successful recovery.
Day Two and Beyond: Rehabilitation Begins
As you progress, physiotherapists work with you to start a rehabilitation program tailored to your surgery. The goals here are to restore function, improve strength, and increase mobility. These rehabilitation efforts are pivotal in determining when you can safely be discharged.
Preparing for Discharge
Before we consider discharge, several criteria must be met. You must be able to manage pain with oral medication, have no significant complications, and show adequate mobility. We also ensure you understand your home care instructions and follow-up appointments.
Support Systems and Home Readiness
Before your surgery, we’ll go over your home environment and support system. If you live alone or have stairs to navigate, your stay might be extended, or alternative arrangements, such as a rehabilitation facility, might be suggested.
Hospital Stay Estimates by Procedure Type
For minor arthroscopic surgeries, many patients are discharged on the same day. For more extensive arthroscopic procedures, a one to two-day stay may be required.
Hip and Knee Replacements
These major surgeries typically require a hospital stay of one to four days. We aim to have you standing and moving with assistance the day after surgery.
Spinal procedures can vary greatly, but most patients should expect to stay for two to four days depending on the extent of the surgery and immediate post-operative mobility. Be sure to ask your orthopedic surgeon in Phoenix, AZ for more specifics if you’re facing spinal surgery, to get a detailed estimate.
Complex Reconstructive Surgeries
Such surgeries often require a longer stay of five to seven days or more, as the initial recovery process is more demanding.
Continued Care After Hospital Discharge
Depending on your progress, you might continue rehabilitation at home or in a specialized facility. This decision is made with your best interest in mind, ensuring a safe and effective recovery. Regular follow-up visits also allow us to assess your recovery and address any concerns. These sessions are crucial for a successful outcome and influence the overall duration of your recovery process. Our commitment to you extends beyond your hospital stay. We provide resources and support to help you through your rehabilitation journey.
Outpatient physical therapy is often required, and we will coordinate with physical therapists to continue your rehabilitation program. This continuation of care is vital for your full recovery and return to normal activities.
Managing Expectations and the Importance of Personalizing Care
It’s essential to understand that recovery times can vary significantly from person to person. Our approach is to personalize your care based on your specific needs and surgery type. We consider every factor, from the surgery itself to your personal progress, to ensure that your hospital stay is neither too short to compromise your health nor too long to delay your return to the comfort of your home.
As we monitor your recovery, we focus on specific milestones that indicate you’re ready to leave the hospital. These include adequate pain control, minimal assistance required for movement, the ability to perform personal care activities, and no significant surgical complications. We’ll provide a detailed plan that outlines the benchmarks you’ll need to achieve before discharge.
Nutrition and Hydration
Proper nutrition and hydration play a crucial role in healing. Staying well-nourished and hydrated can help expedite your discharge by enhancing your body’s ability to heal. We’ll go over this with you before surgery, and if you have any questions about how to modify your diet to promote faster healing, we can offer help.
Medication Management Post-Discharge
Before you leave the hospital, we’ll review your medications with you, ensuring you understand dosages and schedules. Proper medication management is critical for pain control and preventing complications, which in turn affects how quickly you can return to your daily life.
Infection Prevention and Care
Infection is a concern after any surgery, so, before you leave the hospital, we’ll educate you on how to care for your surgical site and recognize signs of infection.
Family and Caregiver Involvement
The support of family and caregivers is an integral part of your recovery. We can provide education and resources to your support network, empowering them to assist you effectively once you leave the hospital.
Long-Term Recovery and Outcome
The ultimate goal of your hospital stay and subsequent discharge is to set you on the path to the best possible long-term outcome. This includes not only the surgical success but also the restoration of function and return to daily activities. We will work with you to set realistic expectations and goals for your long-term recovery.
Building a Foundation for Health and Mobility
Our care philosophy extends beyond the immediate surgical and post-operative period. We aim to build a foundation for ongoing health and mobility. This includes education on lifestyle modifications, exercise programs, and preventive measures to avoid future orthopedic issues.
As your orthopedic care providers, we are here to support you every step of the way. From pre-surgical consultation to post-discharge care, we strive to ensure that your journey through orthopedic surgery leads to a successful outcome and a quick return to the quality of life you deserve. Contact us today at Mattalino Orthopaedic in Phoenix, AZ to learn more.