Foot & Ankle Surgery FAQs
Can I take my regular medication?
Yes you can, even on the day of surgery with a small sip of water. Patients with diabetes and those on blood thinning tablets will have special instructions.
Do I need to bring my X-rays to hospital?
Yes it is very important to bring all relevant X-rays with you.
Will I have my surgery as soon as I am admitted to hospital?
No, there may be a wait depending on the order of the list as to what time you have your operation.
Will I see my surgeon prior to surgery?
Your surgeon will see you in the pre-operative holding area before your operation or earlier if there are any relevant issues.
Do I need to make a post-operative appointment?
No that is organised for you and you will receive this before you leave the hospital.
How do I obtain a work certificate?
For all certificates call the rooms after surgery.
What is the process for discharge from hospital?
Hospitals are busy places and beds are required for other sick people requiring treatment. You will be discharged when pain is controlled by oral medication and you are safe on crutches/frame.
When can I drive?
From a motor vehicle insurance point of view, the minimum time will be after your post-operative appointment.
What do I do if my dressings get wet?
Take the dressings down and replace with gauze and a crepe bandage.
What if my bandages become blood stained and or tight?
If this occurs call the rooms and we will arrange for the dressings to be changed.
After wound healing
When does the swelling stop?
Swelling often increases over the first 6 weeks and then reduces to normal over the next 6 weeks. This is the normal way the body heals. Rest and elevation helps. As the foot swells it is common to have stiffness and mild nerve pain so attention to swelling is important.
What if part of my wound is still oozing?
Some people do have slower healing rates. Changing the dressing daily and keeping a dry dressing in place is what is required.
When can I exercise?
Low impact exercise can begin soon after your wound has healed. High impact (vigorous walking running and jumping) exercise varies but is usually after 6 weeks
When will I be back to normal?
Three months is the healing time for most procedures although larger operations may take up to 12 months.
When can I travel by aeroplane?
You can travel anytime but there are added risks of deep venous thrombosis during the first three months.
Will I beep going through the Airport security?
Ordinarily no, however in some cases you may activate an X-ray machine (i.e. ankle replacement or large metallic screws). If uncertain, take a copy of your X-rays with you.
Can I damage them if I knock them?
Usually not, however if the toe shape changes or there is prolonged (not just immediate) pain call the office.
Will I have pain?
Some pain after surgery is unavoidable. Severe pain that escalates rather than subsides is of concern and you should contact us. There shouldn’t be excessive pain after more than a few days so contact us if this is the case.
What if I feel nauseated?
The most common cause for this is taking excess codeine or opiates such as Panadeine Forte or or Tramadol. Move to using Panadol and/or Nurofen.