The Patient Experience

Studies show that patients recover better and have increased confidence when they are provided with a comprehensive picture of their treatment and recovery. We are devoted to teaching patients about what to expect in surgery, during their post-operative hospital stay, and when they return home.

Features of the joint replacement patient experience at Washington Hospital include:

  • Nurses and therapists who specialize in the care of joint replacement patients
  • Emphasis on group activities as well as individualized care
  • Instruction by our physical therapists and occupational therapists on exercises, transfer techniques, proper ambulation skills, and self-care, to facilitate safe and independent mobility
  • Education for patients’ family and friends, who act as “coaches”
  • A Case Manager who coordinates all patient-centered discharge planning

What to Expect

At Your Pre-op Appointment

During your appointment, you will be asked about your medical history and you will sign any applicable consent forms. You may have tests and lab work performed, as ordered by your surgeon. These tests are done to check your current state of health and prepare you for your surgery.


You will be asked to bring the following items to your pre-op appointment:

  • Your medications in prescription bottles along with a current list of your medications including inhalers, vitamins, supplements and over the counter medications. Your list should include exact dosages, time and frequency.
  • Current insurance cards or information
  • Advance medical directive, if you have one (Click here to learn more about advance directives)
  • Wear loose, comfortable clothing

Please ask your doctor about:

  • Taking aspirin, ibuprofen, other blood thinning products or vitamins
  • Any possible lab work - do you need to fast, refrain from taking medications, or other restrictions prior to testing

You will be given specific information about what time an where to report for your surgery, as well as what you should bring with you.

As a member of your own “care team,” it’s important that you understand what’s going to happen and your role. We have found that proper expectations ensure a rapid and successful recovery.

During your stay

You will participate in group therapy classes, along with other joint replacement patients, which have been specifically designed for the smoothest, most comfortable recovery. Family members are encouraged to participate as “coaches” during the therapy classes.

After your stay

If you require additional physical or occupational therapy after discharge, home health care agencies and outpatient rehabilitation services easily and expediently arrange continued rehabilitation services. These handpicked resources share our wellness approach and complement what has been accomplished in the hospital, creating continuity of care.

Washington Hospital Experience: The Special Care Nursery

Join Cheri Sabraw as she takes you through a tour of Washington Hospital's Special Care Nursery.

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