260616 Getting ready for a joint replacement-part four
According to the National Institute of Arthritis Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, which is a part of the National Institute of Health, there are over 1 million Americans having a hip or knee replaced every year. Research, over the years, has found that even if you are older a joint replacement will increase your ability to move around with less pain.
Once you are home, you need to notify your doctor immediately if:
- The area around the surgical site looks red or begins to drain fluids. Examples include, bruising or nosebleeds.
You recognize one or more of these common signs of an infection.
- a fever,
- increased redness or swelling,
- your skin feels hot,
- more drainage from the site,
- color changes in the drainage, or
- more pain than before
Notify your surgeon of any new symptom, such as a pain that gets worse or refuses to go away with medication
Moreover, call them immediately if you experience any pain or notice swelling in your calf or have shortness of breath because this can be a sign of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) which is a clot forming in your lower leg.
If you notice any of these symptoms of a DVT, don’t massage your calf. Immediately call your doctor. Don’t wait, even if it is after hours, call so you can be examined and if necessary treated. You may have to go to the Emergency Room.
This is a serious condition, don’t treat it lately.
Some of the symptoms include:
- Pain or tenderness in the calf that gets worse when you pull your foot forward
- Increased skin temperature in the area over your calf
Any pain or difficulty in walking after the joint replacement that has suddenly occurred should be a red flag. Your doctor needs to know about this especially if the recovery up to this time has been going smoothly.
It cannot be emphasized too much that you must listen to and follow your surgeon’s recommendations and guidelines.