Recovery Process: Discharge Instructions
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Wear the T.E.D. hose (white stockings) for one month from the date of surgery. Wear the stocking during the day on both legs. Make sure there are no wrinkles in the stockings. The stockings prevent blood from pooling in your legs during the post-operative period when you are not as active as usual. You may take them off at night while you are sleeping. You can stop wearing the stockings one-month after surgery.
You should take coated aspirin (Ecotrin* or Ascriptin*) for one month after surgery. Aspirin has a mild blood thinning quality that is helpful during the post-op period. It is important to take the coated aspirin, because it will not upset your stomach. [If your take Coumadin* or Persantine*, DO NOT take aspirin. Coumadin* and Persantine* have blood thinning qualities of their own.] If you take Ecotrin* and Ascriptin*, you should take 325mg. in the morning and again in the evening. Remember…acetominophen (e.g. Tylenol*) or ibuprofen(e.g.Advil*, Motrin*, or Nuprin*) ARE NOT a substitute for aspirin.
You may take a shower if your incision is completely dry. If there are any blisters from tape, small areas of the incision that are not sealed over, or red pimply looking areas on or near the incision, DO NOT get it wet. Please call the office and let one of the physician's assistants know. If you shower, do not rub the incision to dry it, just pat it gently. The paper tapes over the incision will curl up over the next two weeks and fall off on their own. If you notice a thread at the end of the incision, tape it down to the skin and notify the doctor's office. You will receive instructions on what you should do.
There are no restrictions to your diet. Eat a normal diet as you did before surgery. Make sure you eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and drink 6-8 glasses of water a day. This will help prevent constipation.
You may drive a car usually 2 to 4 weeks after surgery(depending upon the type of surgery). This guideline is for your personal safety. You need to have good control of your leg to work the gas and brake pedals. This rule is meant to protect you. Do not drive while on pain medications.
If you need an application for a disabled parking placard, you may ask the medical assistant at the office. The form will be signed by your doctor. You must fill out your portion of the form, and then take it to either the DMV or the Auto Club of Southern California (AAA). Disabled parking placards are issued for either 3 or 6 month periods until you are on your feet or independently walking.
You may get out of the house as long as you feel up to it. Remember to take any devices such as your reacher, crutches, or cane with you. Use the handicapped bathroom stall. If you are in a hotel, request a handicapped accessible room.
To fully recover, you must exercise every day. It is helpful to take a pain pill about 30 minutes before you exercise. If you are hurting, you are less likely to work the muscles you need to strengthen. It is important to ice your joint after you exercise to help reduce swelling. Ice should be left on for 20 - 30 minutes. Please see the next page for exercises and walking guidelines.
You may resume sexual activities as soon as you feel able. It is easier to observe your hip precautions by lying on your back. Your therapist can provide you with diagrams and suggestions that you may use during the recovery period.
Exercise and Walking Guidelines >