How to Prepare for Total Shoulder Replacement Surgery

October 3rd, 2014

 If you have experienced ongoing shoulder pain, you and your doctor may be discussing the option for a replacement surgery of the ball and joint. This sort of procedure can go a long way to relieving that ongoing pain.  Once you and your doctor determine that this is the right option for your situation, you may be wondering how to prepare for total shoulder replacement surgery.  At Rothman Orthopaedic Institute, our shoulder specialists perform many of these surgeries each year, and can recommend some important steps for preparation. 

First and foremost, communication with your surgeon is key.  He or she will be able to best advise you about how to prepare for total shoulder replacement surgery.  Additionally, there is important information that you will need to share with your surgeon prior to the procedure.  Your currently known allergies and medications being taken are both important to share with your surgeon.  Some medications may need to be stopped or modified in preparation of the surgery, including nonprescription drugs like aspirin.  
Next, it is important to consider your own overall wellness leading up to the surgery.  You should try to achieve the best possible health before the procedure; even small infections and health problems may cause a delay to your operation.  In order to prevent these or other problems, it is best to quit smoking at least one month before surgery, and also to deal with any current health problems.  As mentioned above, it is important to many any health concern, even seemingly small ones, to your surgeon prior to your shoulder replacement. 
Finally, in addition to medical considerations, an important aspect of your preparation is thinking ahead to your recovery.  The result of your surgery, after all, depends a great deal on the course of your rehabilitation.  You should plan to be less functional for six to twelve weeks and make arrangements for help performing tasks like driving and other normal chores.  
For more information about how to prepare for total shoulder replacement surgery, contact us today.  
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