How you prepare

Food and medications

Your doctor or anesthesiologist might advise you to stop taking certain medications and dietary supplements before your surgery. You'll likely be instructed not to eat anything after midnight the day of your surgery.

Prepare for your recovery

For several weeks after the procedure, you might need to use crutches or a walker, so arrange for them before your surgery. Make sure you have a ride home from the hospital and help with everyday tasks, such as cooking, bathing and doing laundry. If you live alone, your surgeon's staff or hospital discharge planner can suggest a temporary caretaker.

To make your home safer and easier to navigate during recovery, consider doing the following:

  • Create a living space on one floor since climbing stairs can be difficult.
  • Install safety bars or a secure handrail in your shower or bath.
  • Secure stairway handrails.
  • Get a stable chair with a firm seat cushion and back, and a footstool to elevate your leg.
  • Arrange for a toilet-seat riser with arms if you have a low toilet.
  • Get a stable bench or chair for your shower.
  • Remove loose rugs and cords.