When you take your car to a mechanic, or hire a contractor to fix a hole in the roof, you probably see yourself in the role of a passive consumer. You hire somebody for a job, they do the work, and if they do it well you have no more problem.
Foot surgery doesn’t really work that way. Unfortunately, you can’t just show up for your surgery, get your foot fixed, and go on your merry way, at least not if you want the best possible outcome for your healing and future health. You and your surgeon are a team, and while Dr. Danciger will provide you with the absolute highest quality surgical care, he’s only half the equation. Making sure you come properly prepared for surgery and commit yourself to post-operative care will also be required in order to achieve the fullest healing in the shortest possible timeframe.
For example, certain medications (such as aspirin or ibuprofen) and substances (such as nicotine) may impair the healing process or increase the risk of complications. During your initial appointment, we’ll go over your current medications and other lifestyle habits and provide guidelines for how long before and after surgery you need to abstain from such substances.
We’ll also, of course, go over what you can expect in terms of how long you’ll need to wear a cast or boot, how long you’ll need to keep weight off your feet, whether or not you can drive, when you’ll be able to go back to normal shoes and normal activities, etc. Obviously this relates to aftercare, but careful preparation before surgery can help make the transition smoother for you as well—it’ll be easier to follow your doctor’s orders, and reduce the risk of an accidental setback.
Picking a time for surgery that will allow you to get extra help from family and friends for those first few weeks, and making sure your home is clean and obstacle-free before the day of your surgery will make navigating much easier. Consider temporarily rearranging furniture, clothing storage, food, kitchen and bathroom items, and other daily necessities in order to make your home more accessible to limited mobility—you can even consider setting up a sleeping area on the main floor to limit use of the stairs.Every patient and every surgery is different. At all appointments with Dr. Danciger, we’ll make sure you have all the information and educational materials you need to accomplish your personal goals for recovery. To schedule an appointment at our Palm Desert, CA office, please call 760-568-0108 today.