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Joint Replacement Class

Preparing for Surgery at ROSC

Click here to view the Joint Replacement Handbook PDF

Haga clic aquí para ver Reemplazo Total de Articulaciones guía del paciente PDF

Download the MyChart App

  • ROC uses MyChart Mobile App to send reminders, notifications, and questionnaires regarding your surgery. Please download MyChart Mobile App. These reminders, notifications and questions communicate only with the Mobile App.

    To learn more about how to download the app and how to complete your "To-Do's" please refer to pages 8-9 in the Joint Replacement Handbook PDF at the top of the page.

Surgery Buddy

  • A Surgery Buddy is necessary for your safety. Failure to arrange for a Surgery Buddy will result in your surgery being cancelled. Surgery Buddy duties include but are not limited to:

  • Accompanies you to and stays at the surgery center for your surgery.

  • Is available throughout the day for physical therapy, and post-operative instructions.

  • Receives discharge instructions.

  • Drives you home.

  • Assists you into your home.

  • Must stay with you for a minimum of 72 hours post-surgery.

PASS Clinic

  • PASS is a convenient pre-admission screening service that alleviates the headaches and runaround of getting cleared for your upcoming procedure. Your physician’s assistant will help you coordinate your PASS appointment.

Scheduling Process

  • Your physician scheduler will contact you to schedule your surgery.

Weeks & Days Leading Up To Surgery

  • There are certain medications that need to be stopped before your surgery. Please refer to pages 10-11 of the Joint Replacement Handbook.

  • Prepping your home

    Having your home ready for your return from the surgery center will make for a smooth and safe recovery. Make sure you can safely get in and out of every room in your house with a walker. Set up a comfortable, sturdy armchair to sit in throughout the day. Some things to consider to prepare your home: decluttering, obtain furniture risers, do laundry, prepare a supply of meals, etc. More information on things you can do to prepare your home can be found in the Joint Replacement Handbook.

  • Pre-hab Exercises

    Depending on the surgery you are getting, there are specific exercises that need to be completed prior to your surgery. Please refer to the Total Joint Replacement Handbook, pages 28-31 for more information.

The Day of Your Surgery

  • Check-In

    Your check-in time is 2 hours prior to your surgery. Please bring a photo ID, insurance card, and medication list with you. We advise leaving all valuables including jewelry at home. Wear loose, comfortable clothing with shoes that are easy to slip on and bring your Front Wheel Walker if this has already been obtained.

  • Pre-Op & Surgery Preparation

    After checking in, you are escorted to the pre-op area where you will sign consent forms for the surgery and anesthesia. Once in the pre-op area, you can expect to have any additional tests completed (i.e., blood sugar, pregnancy test) and an IV will be started. During this time you will have the opportunity to ask your surgeon and anesthesiologist any remaining questions.

  • Discharge

    After the surgery is complete, you will be transported to the recovery room (PACU). Your stay in PACU will last from one-three hours depending on the individual. Patients have a specific goals that need to be met before discharge (please refer to page 19 of the Total Joint Replacement Handbook). Your nurse will discuss discharge instructions with you and your surgery buddy.

For additional information on what else is required before your surgery, please refer to pages 10-14 of the Joint Replacement Handbook PDF located at the top of this page.

After Surgery

Your surgery buddy can help you manage your pain medication, ice, and elevate your surgery leg and remind you to get up and walk at least once every hour. A responsible adult must remain with you. It is normal to feel sleepy. For 24 hours do not drive, drink alcoholic beverages, smoke, or ingest marijuana, make important decisions, or sign legal documents. 

Infection Avoidance

  • To reduce the risk of infection wash hands frequently.

  • Deep Breathing and Incentive Spirometer

    To reduce the risk of pneumonia, cough and breathe deeply ten times every hour while you are awake. If provided, use the device called an Incentive Spirometer to increase lung expansion.


  • To avoid nausea, slowly advance diet as tolerated, avoiding spicy or greasy foods for the first day. Avoid taking narcotics on an empty stomach.

Pain and Medication

  • Please remember that pain is part of the normal healing process. Your orthopedic surgeon will prescribe narcotic pain medication. Patients who receive narcotic prescriptions are closely monitored. Narcotics are prescribed for a period of one to two weeks after a surgical procedure. Use narcotics as needed and wean off prescription medication as soon as possible. The first 2-4 days after returning home from surgery are the most difficult.

    Please refer to page 21 of the Joint Replacement Handbook to learn more about the common side effects of narcotic pain information.

Swelling & Bruising

  • Swelling and bruising is normal and varies from one individual to another. Bruising and swelling may occur immediately or can take several days to show up. Swelling is normal; if swelling is accompanied by redness, heat, or coolness in your surgical leg, contact your surgeon.

    Ice is an anti-inflammatory and minimizes swelling. Do NOT apply ice directly to your skin, do NOT use heat as this can increase the swelling. Please refer to page 22 of the Joint Replacement Handbook for more information.

Dressing Care

  • Take care of your surgical dressing as directed by your surgeon. Keep surgical dressing clean, dry, and intact.

    Please refer to page 22 of the Joint Replacement Handbook for more information on dressing care.

Please refer to the Joint Replacement Handbook for more details regarding what to expect after surgery. 

Please call your surgeon’s medical assistant during regular business hours. If you have questions or concerns after hours, you may call the main number for Reno Orthopedic Center at (775)786-3040. We want to know right away if you have any of the following things happen after you go home from the surgery center:

  • Fever > 101.5 degrees.
  • If you fall.
  • Shaking, chills.
  • Increased redness at the incision site and surrounding area.
  • Increased pain and swelling despite ice elevation above the level of the heart.
  • Drainage that saturates the dressing resulting in fluid running down your leg.
  • New onset of pain.
  • Inability to bear weight on the surgical leg.
  • Increased numbness or tingling that will not resolve by positioning.
  • If you think you have an infection in any other area of the body, for example – sinus, tooth, bladder, or skin.

What Comes Next

Follow-up Call

  • You will receive a follow-up call in 48-72 hours from a nurse at the surgery center to see how you are recovering.

"To Do" Tasks in MyChart

  • Respond daily to the series of questions in MyChart when you receive a notification. These questions arrive at timed intervals before and after surgery. Expect questions daily for the first 7 days after surgery then every other day the second week after surgery. Responses are “escalated” based upon parameters for each condition. Expect a message or phone call response within 24-48 hours.

    If you have an immediate concern, please contact the office: 775-786-3040

Follow Up Appointment

  • You will follow up with your surgeon in their clinic 1-2 weeks after surgery. This appointment is sometimes scheduled before surgery. If your appointment is pre-scheduled, the date is included in your surgery letter. If you do not have an appointment listed on the surgery letter, contact your surgeon’s medical assistant.

Physical Therapy

  • Physical Therapy will begin within 5-7 days if ordered by your surgeon.

3 Month to 1 Year Follow Up

  • To follow your progress and get feedback on your total joint journey, please complete the MyChart surveys.