Having Surgery? Checklist to prepare for surgery
Your podiatrist will review the specifics of your surgery and what you can expect. Below are some general tips to help you prepare for your foot surgery.
- If you work, you may have to take some time off. Ask your podiatrist when you will be able to return to work.
- If you smoke, try to quit as instructed.
- Ask your podiatrist whether you should stop taking aspirin or other medications.
- If you are prescribed any medications before surgery, be sure to take them as advised.
- Do not eat or drink anything after might night before your surgery, or as instructed.
- If you have a sudden change in your health, be sure to tell your podiatrist. Even a cold or flu can affect the healing process and delay your surgery.
- Ask your podiatrist what to bring on the day of the surgery.
- Arrange for someone to drive you home after surgery.
- Stock up on enough food for a few days.
- Bring crutches, a cane or a walker on the day of your surgery if you have them.
- Have ice or a cold pack handy at home.
- Ask a friend or family member to help you at home for a few days while you heal.
After your surgery
After your surgery, you may have some foot pain. It may also be stitched and bandaged. Follow your doctor’s instructions to relieve pain and help the healing process.
Pain is usually most severe the second and third days after surgery. To reduce swelling and relieve pain, apply an ice pack on or around the area. Be sure to keep your foot raised above heart level. And take medication as directed.
It is normal to feel some pain when you start walking again. Call your doctor if the pain is constant or increases.
Caring for your incision
Keep it clean and dry. Getting your incision wet can lead to infection so be sure to keep your foot out of the shower or tub. If it gets wet, contact your doctor. Also, let them know if you see any changes like redness or swelling in your incision.
When to call your podiatrist after surgery
- Pain that’s not relieved by medication
- Cold and blue toes (signs of a blood flow problem)
- Fever, increased swelling and redness near the incision (signs of infection)
- Excessive bleeding
- A painful, warm and swollen calf