When you are facing surgery, it can be overwhelming, especially when that surgery will incapacitate you to some degree, such as hand surgery. Knowing what to expect in your preparations and getting your home and family organized prior to your operation can help ease a great deal of the anxiety and make your recovery go much smoother. This guide will help you prepare as well as know what to expect as you get ready to have hand surgery.
Your Pre-Op Appointment for Wrist or Hand Surgery
You will have an appointment prior to your surgery to meet with a hand specialist. Use this time to ask your hand surgeon any questions that you may have. Do this before signing the consent for that gives your surgeon permission to perform treatment so that you can be certain that you ask all your questions. If you don’t understand any aspect of the process, ask for clarification. If you take medications, ask your doctor if you need to change the dosage frequency or timing – or stop taking it altogether – prior to the surgery.
Your hand doctor will go over the procedure and discuss what to expect during recovery. You will likely be given some printed instructions that explain how to prepare for surgery, fasting before your operation, and what to expect during the recovery phase.
Pre-Surgical Check-Ups that Your Hand Surgeon may Require
Most likely you will be sent to your general practitioner to get a complete physical before surgery. This is standard procedure and a safeguard to ensure that you are healthy enough to withstand the anesthesia and the operation itself and that you don’t have any underlying conditions that could cause complications. Other checkups your doctor may require include (depending you’re your medical history):
You may also need to undergo other tests such as a stress test, blood tests, x-rays, and MRI. The tests that are required depend on the doctor and on the patient’s medical history.
How to Prepare Your Home and Family
Often after hand or wrist surgery, you will have to wear a splint. This can present a challenge when you are trying to perform household tasks. Make some preparations before you have your surgery to make things easier when you are recovering. Some things you may want to do to prepare your household:
- Choose clothing that is loose fitting with wide arms. Make this clothing easily accessible, preferable on a table or desk so you don’t have to wrestle with a drawer or closet door and hangers.
- Cook some meals and freeze them in portion sizes so that you can easily prepare them.
- Get paper plates and plastic utensils so that you don’t have any dishes to wash.
- Get someone to help you if you can. You will be doing everything one-handed and it will be much easier if you have someone helping you.
- Arrange for someone to drive you to your post-op appointments and other doctor’s visits.
- Clean your home well so you won’t be tempted to try to do it while you are recovering.
Do you need hand or wrist surgery? Call Florida Hand Center. Our hand specialists will work with you to find the best treatments that fit your lifestyle. Call our office to learn about a free hand screening and get the answers and treatments you need to get your life back. Don’t let pain and immobility in your hands and wrist keep you from the good things in life any longer. Call today!