Patient Education

What To Expect
Some types of rehabilitation expectations:
Reducing your pain & swelling
Training with crutches or per use of your brace
Maintaining and increasing your range of motion
Maintaining and increasing your strength
Returning to your normal activities of daily living
Protection for life

Rehabilitation begins shortly after your surgery. Light exercises and in some cases a Continuous Passive Motion machine to keep your leg moving may be used. You will have crutches or a brace to help rest your leg for a while. You can usually expect rehabilitation to progress in phases per your physician’s protocol. Generally, you can expect your rehabilitation to become a progression that will last at least 5 months. At this time, your physician will determine how your rehabilitation will be continued.

Remember that the physical therapist will guide you through your rehabilitation, but in the end…It is up to you.

Electronic Modalities
Your physician has scheduled you for surgery and one if the items you will be receiving in post-operative recovery for your home use is an electrical Neuromuscular Stimulator/TENS/E-Stim unit. This unit sends electrical impulses through the skin to the nerves and muscles to create an involuntary muscle contraction or it can produce pain relief if it is prescribed on a different setting. This unit allows the patient to receive therapeutic treatment without actual physical activity. Your physician or health care provider will instruct you on how to use the unit effectively. If you have any problems or concerns, you should speak with your physician. The unit is a small portable system that can be effective in helping you through your rehabilitation.

Continuous Passive Motion (CPM)
Your physician has scheduled you for surgery and one if the items you will be receiving in post-operative recovery is a continuous passive motion unit (CPM). The CPM unit passively bends and straightens your knee for you to maintain your range of motion.

When you arrive in your room, a representative will meet you to put the unit on and instruct you in its use. This unit will remain with you while you are in the hospital and will be brought to your home when the physician has discharged you to go home. A representative will bring the unit to your home for your convenience and will be available to set up the CPM and answer any questions you may have about the unit. The representative will not leave until you are comfortable with the CPM and feel confident in using it per your physician’s orders.

When your physician terminates the use of the CPM you may phone our office at (909) 390-9111 and we will pick it up.

If Complications Arise OR Questions:
If you have any problems or questions with the unit, such as the device becoming locked or malfunctioning please call us at 1-(909) 390-9111.

We have a 24-hour on call service available for you.

Cold Therapy
Your physician has scheduled you for surgery and one of the items you will be receiving in post-operative recovery is a cold therapy unit. The unit consists of a cooler that will hold ice water, a pump to circulate the ice water and a cold pad. The cold pad will be placed on your surgical site at the end of your surgery.

When you arrive in recovery, the unit will be attached and turned on. This unit will go home with you and should be used as often as possible until your first post-operative visit. Your physician will then determine your continued usage at that time.

Cold Therapy vs. Ice Pack
Cold therapy offers a continuous cold treatment between 45 and 55 degrees, which is proven to be the optimum temperature to prevent swelling, promote wound healing and decrease pain. Ice packs allow for a larger range of temperature fluctuation and provide the correct therapy only a portion of the time.

Knee Bracing
Your physician has ordered a functional knee brace for you today. This brace is used for post ACL reconstruction as well as conservative treatment to provide additional support to your knee as the tissues heal and long term during physical activities.

You will be measured for your brace before your surgery. After the doctor has seen you at your first post-operative visit, the brace will be fit to your leg and you will be instructed on how to apply the brace.

The brace will have three primary functions:
To help keep the lower leg from shifting forward.
To help keep the knee from hyper-extending.
To help control internal rotation of the knee. Initially, during the immediate post-operative period, the brace will be worn anytime you are weight bearing on your leg. This period can last between 6 and 12 weeks. At this point you will wear the brace during specific activities. Direct questions in regard to which activities should be directed to your physician.

Pain Management
Your physician has scheduled you for surgery and one of the items you will be receiving in post-operative recovery is a pain pump unit. This unit puts pain relief in the palm of your hand …. literally. The pain pump is a controlled local anesthetic that is placed directly into the wound site. The unit consists of a small catheter, tube extension and a patient controlled local infusion pump.

When you arrive in recovery, the unit will be attached and ready for you to use whenever you feel is necessary. This unit will go home with you and can be used every 4-6 hours as needed for pain or whenever you feel is necessary. Keep in mind that you have 12-13 full depressions of the blue button, so make them last.

Removing Catheter
Once the unit is empty (usually 2-3 days), or per the physician’s instructions, the catheter needs to be removed. The removal should be by a licensed health care provider or by the patient per the physician’s orders.

Here are some directions for the removal of the catheter:

Wash hands.
Remove any dressing and throw away.
You should be able to see the catheter. Remove any pieces of tape and notice that the catheter is NOT sutured in place and should not be painful to remove.
Take a few deep breaths and pull gently on the catheter, it should easily slide out of the incision site. If resistance is encountered or if the tube stretches excessively without releasing, then STOP pulling and contact your physician. They may wish to remove the catheter themselves at the office.
Apply a sterile gauze pad over the tiny hole that the catheter was removed from and hold slight pressure for a few minutes. Cover the incision with a sterile bandage and record the time and date that the catheter was removed.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding the pain care unit, please contact the attending physician.

Cervical Collar
Your physician has scheduled you for surgery and one of the items you will be receiving in post-operative recovery is a cervical collar for your neck. This collar is used for post neck surgery. You should follow your clinician’s instructions regarding when you should wear the brace. You will be measured and fitted for your collar either pre or post-operatively. If you are measured pre-operatively in our clinic, you must be sure to bring the collar with you for your surgery. If you are to receive the collar post-operatively, a health representative will be present in recovery to fit your collar and instruct you on how to put the collar on and take it off. Your physician can answer questions that you may have regarding when and where you will have to wear your brace.

Spinal Bracing
Your physician has ordered a spinal brace for you today. This brace is used for pre and post back surgery as well as conservative treatment to provide additional support to your back as the tissues heal and long term during physical activities.

You will be measured for your brace either pre or post-operatively. If you are measured pre-operatively in our clinic, you must be sure to bring the back brace with you for your surgery. After surgery the brace will be applied for you to wear when you are up and moving about. You should follow your physician’s instructions regarding when to wear your back brace.

How To Care For Your Brace
Do wear a T-shirt under the brace for maximum comfort.
Do keep the brace clean (use warm soapy water).
Do tighten the brace to ensure a snug fit.
Do take care when you are bending, stretching, sitting or standing.
Don’t cut, file or damage your brace.
Don’t remove the brace unless instructed to do so.
Don’t take part in active sports or physical activity that causes pain.
Don’t use any solvents or abrasive-cleaning agents on your brace.
Don’t put the brace close to a direct source of heat.

Brace Application/Adjustment
Your back brace will be fit specifically to you; however, some minor adjustments in snugness may be needed after the initial fitting. Adjust the brace one strap at a time and remember that if you tighten or loosen one side of the brace you must do the same to the other side to keep the brace centered.

If you have any problems or questions about your brace please call our office 909-390-9111

Our staff if on call 24 hours a day to assist you.

PlexiPulse Pump
Your physician has scheduled you for surgery and one of the items you will be receiving in post-operative recovery or for your home use is a PlexiPulse pump unit. This unit increases blood flow while you are resting or unable to be up and walking. It is a compression device that goes on the foot or calf area and squeezes the area to help pump blood through the system.

When you arrive in recovery, the unit may be attached and started or it may be prescribed for your use at home. When prescribed, the PlexiPulse can be adjusted to provide pulsing therapy that is customized to meet your individual needs. The unit is comfortable and easy to use. It has an automatic feedback to regulate the intensity for you and avoid any discomfort.