Surgery Info

Scheduling Surgery

At your pre-op visit with us, our nurse (Angie Toth, RN) and Dr. Griggs will go over the surgical procedure with you and answer all of your questions. At this time, you will sign your surgical consent, get prescriptions for pain medication and physical therapy, and get a sling, crutches, or icing unit if you need them. You will also make your post op appointment for 10-14 days after your surgery at this time.


You will then need to register with the hospital and have a meeting with a surgery RN to discuss your health history, surgery, and anesthesia for the procedure. Depending on your health history and the surgery, you might need clearance from your primary care provider or have some lab work done prior to surgery day.


Pre-op Instructions

  • Do not eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery (this includes chewing gum, candy, smoking and chewing tobacco); your surgery could be cancelled if you eat or drink after midnight
  • Fill your pain medication prescriptions and have ibuprofen and Tylenol available prior to your surgery
  • Have ice or icing unit available. You can purchase icing units from gO
  • Have extra pillows/blankets available for elevation for extremity surgery
  • Schedule a physical therapy appointment for 1-2 days after your surgery if advised
  • Arrange for a responsible adult to pick you up after surgery and to stay with you for the first 24 hours post-surgery
  • If you are prescribed an inhaler for Asthma, bring it with you to surgery
  • Bring containers for glasses, dentures or contact lenses
  • Bring your crutches or arm slings with you to surgery. You can purchase these items from gO
  • Wear clean, loose fitting, comfortable clothing the day of surgery. Large button-up shirts for shoulder and arm surgeries are recommended
  • Shower the night before surgery or the morning of and wear clean clothing. Do not wear any lotion or make-up to surgery, and remove nail polish
  • Remove all jewelry
  • The hospital OR will call you the day before your surgery with your arrival time and advise you if you should take your medications the day of surgery

Post-op Instructions

  • Ice, double bagged in Ziploc bags, then wrapped in a thin towel, is recommended post-operatively. gO has icing units and cryo-cuffs available for purchase for knee and shoulder surgeries
  • Elevate the extremity above your heart, especially for the first 72 hours. This is when you will have the most swelling. For shoulder surgeries, sleeping in a recliner will probably be the most comfortable
  • Take your pain medication as prescribed, and take it with food. It is important to stay on top of pain and not let it get out of control. See our link about pain medication refills
  • Anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen can be used in conjunction with narcotic pain medication and will help with swelling. We usually recommend 800mg Ibuprofen every 8 hours to take in conjunction with Oxycodone
  • Keep your dressing on for five days and keep it dry in the shower. You can use a plastic bag to keep extremities dry. After five days, you make take off the dressing and get the incision site wet in the shower, but no soaking in hot tubs, baths or hot springs for 3 weeks. Make sure it is dried off well after a shower
  • Compression stockings are helpful with swelling, and can be used for weeks post-operatively for knee surgeries. Wearing the stocking on your operative leg will help decrease swelling
  • Sutures are generally removed 10-14 days post op

Other helpful surgery information

  • Vitamin C 1000mg twice a day helps with bone healing, along with Vitamin D, Calcium, and glucosamine with MSM
  • Prepare some healthy meals ahead of time. See Dr. Jenny Ward’s article for post-op diet recommendations: http://griggsortho.com/pre-and-post-op-diet-recommendations/
  • Prepare your home for your return prior to surgery. Remove small throw rugs and other obstacles that may be in your path
  • Have shopping and laundry done
  • Do not drive or operate heavy machinery if you are taking Oxycodone, Percocet or Vicodin
  • Do not take Tylenol with Percocet or Vicodin
  • If you have right, lower extremity surgery, you may not drive until cleared by your surgeon. Under the terms of most insurance policies, the insurer is not obligated to cover accidents in which the driver was still recovering from an earlier injury or operation

Other questions or concerns? Call us at 970.964.8472.