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Total Shoulder Replacement

Total joint replacement surgery is a safe but significant medical event. The following information outlines the general process and activities for total shoulder replacement patients. (Note: This information does not replace testing and consultation with an orthopedic specialist.) 
Part 1 – Before Surgery
Once you and your orthopedic surgeon have determined that you should have joint replacement surgery, you work with the surgeon's office to schedule medical optimization and education.

Medical optimization occurs at the orthopedic office or your primary care office well before the day of surgery. This appointment will focus on ensuring you are in your best medical condition to help minimize your risk for complications. You will have a pre-operative evaluation, review past family/medical/surgical/social history, and check current medications and current functional status.

The provider will also order pre-operative testing, including EKG and labs. The provider will review all the information to ensure you are in your best condition before surgery.
Your surgeon's office will provide all pre-operative education. Our orthopedic team will provide a guidebook to help you throughout your perioperative experience.
Part 2 – Day of Surgery
On the day of your surgery, plan to check in at the hospital two hours before surgery time. Our team will bring you into a pre-operation room to get you ready for surgery. Our team will bring you into a pre-operation room to get you prepared for surgery. Once you go to the operating room, completing a total hip replacement will usually take about one hour.

After surgery, you wake up and recover in the PACU for approximately one hour. Shortly after, you go to a post-operative recovery room. Depending on when you meet discharge criteria, you will recover there for about 3-6 hours.

Discharge Criteria include:
  • Able to eat/drink without significant nausea/vomiting
  • Able to empty the bladder completely
  • Pain is under control with oral medications
  • Able to ambulate with an assistive device  
Part 3 – Going Home, Outpatient Rehabilitation
You will be discharged once discharge criteria have been met. You must arrange for a coach/family member/friend to stay with you for 1-2 weeks after surgery. Your coach will help motivate you and provide moral support. They will also ensure your safety at home. Your coach will also need to be able to provide transportation to outpatient appointments.
Following discharge from the hospital or rehab facility, plan on having outpatient physical therapy about three days per week. Deaconess and our partner Progressive Health have multiple facilities in the tri-state area, which allows our patients to select a convenient physical therapy location.
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