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Joint Replacement Surgery - What to Expect

Avista Adventist Hospital is a 114-bed hospital, with a 13-bed Joint & Spine Care Center in the Boulder / Louisville area specializing in caring for joint replacements. Our program focuses on caring for patients in an atmosphere of wellness. Our highly trained staff is dedicated to making your experience as pleasant as possible, so that you can get back to doing what you love!

  • Patients receive room service meals.
  • Atrium Cafe and Roots Cafe also available.
  • No set visiting hours. Family and friends can visit whenever you would like!
  • Therapy Dog Program
  • Avista Therapy Center on site for outpatient therapy after surgery

Your Joint Replacement Journey

Pre-Op: After you are registered, you will go to Pre-Op. You will be given an opportunity to speak to your surgeon and anesthesiologist. They can answer any questions you may have.

Anesthesia: Your anesthesiologist will discuss with you which form of anesthesia is best suited for you. Choices may include spinal anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia. Spinal anesthesia with sedation is usually recommended for joint replacement surgery. You will not be awake or aware during this type of anesthesia, and patients have fewer side effects from it. General anesthesia is also sometimes recommended, depending upon your medical history.

Surgery: Before leaving the Pre-Op area for surgery, you will be given a sedative. Usually patients do not remember anything after receiving the sedative. Your family and friends will be asked to wait in our waiting area. After your surgery, your surgeon will contact them to give them an update on your status.

Recovery (PACU): After your surgery has been completed, you will be taken to the Recovery Room, also called the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, or PACU. Your vital signs will be closely monitored, and any needed medications will be given. Ice will be applied to your surgical site for comfort. Patients usually remain in PACU for 1 to 2 hours before being transferred to their rooms. Family and friends are not allowed into the PACU area, but rather will reunite with you in your room.

Your Room: From PACU you will be taken to your room, where you may reunite with your family and friends. Your Joint Care Center nurse will greet you and instruct you on how to perform ankle pumps and deep breathing exercises. You may start drinking clear liquids and may resume a regular diet as tolerated. Your nurse will ask you about your pain, and you will be asked to rate it using a 0-10 pain scale. To relieve your pain most effectively, your nurse needs to know how well pain relief measures are working for you. Medications can be adjusted to meet your needs.

The Next Day: You have already begun your recovery and it will continue today. Provided all is going well, you may get dressed in your own comfortable clothing if you desire, and you will participate in group therapy.

Discharge Home: After meeting predetermined discharge goals, you can be discharged from the hospital! If needed, a discharge planner will meet with you regarding any needs you may have, such as home care, private duty assistance, or rehabilitation in a skilled nursing facility. Before leaving the hospital, you will be given written instructions concerning medications, physical therapy, activity, wound care, and follow-up appointments.

For more information about the joint care program or to find out about upcoming seminars please call 303-661-4460, or you may also view upcoming seminars and register online with our event calendar.

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