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Joint Replacement Surgery [7 Easy Answers To Uncomfortable Questions]

1. What can I do about constipation after my surgery?

It is common to have constipation after surgery, particularly when you take narcotic pain medicine. A regular over-the-counter stool softener is the best solution to this problem. Make sure you eat lots of fruits and vegetables, it will also help. In sporadic situations, you may need a suppository or enema.


2. Can I drink alcohol?

Alcohol consumption is not recommended until you have stopped your narcotic pain medicine and your mobility is back. If you suffer from alcohol or drug dependence, consult with your surgeon at our Outpatient Surgery Center, NC.


3. I feel depressed. Is this natural?

It is normal to be in an emotional state, feel anxiety or have trouble sleeping after your surgery. The reasons are many, but the most important factors are:

  • difficulty getting around;
  • discomfort;
  • increased dependency on others.

These emotions will naturally fade as you commence to go back to your systematic activities. If they persist, consult your primary care physician.

4. Can I have sex?

Generally, you can progressively begin being sexually active again when you are comfortable. If you have any doubts, consult your surgeon or physician.


5. Will my new joint replacement set off security sensors when traveling?

Your joint replacement is made of a metal alloy and may or may not be detected when going through some security devices. Notify the security agent you have a metallic implant. The agent will inform you on the security screening procedure.

Outpatient Surgery Center, NC

6. How soon can I take a bath or shower?

You may return home with a impermeable dressing covering the area of your incision. You can shower with this dressing on, but only if the edges are not shedding. If you do not have a waterproof dressing and you still have sutures, staples or stitches, you can protect your incision against water with plastic to keep it dry during your shower. Ask your surgeon at our Outpatient Surgery Center, NC if and how soon your incision can get wet. Using a tub or shower chair in the bathtub or shower may give you the extra support and comfort you need, until you feel more comfortable in moving around.



7. Can I urinate by myself after the joint replacement surgery?

There can be some brief nerve issues after surgery, which decrease your sensation that you need to urinate. There can also be swelling, which can disturb your urination. Attempt to urinate no less than every 2 to 3 hours. If you are not able to urinate in the time following your surgery, inform your nurse. Ask her to evaluate your bladder. She will then inform you what steps can be taken.

If you have any other questions concerning your surgery, please contact your surgeon at  our Outpatient Surgery Center, NC. We will be more than happy to answer all of them, especially the most uncomfortable ones, in the most professional and understanding way.


The Raleigh Orthopaedic Surgery Center’s board certified, fellowship trained surgeons bring together many years of experience to manage and treat joint complications resulting from degenerative joint diseases such as arthritis, musculoskeletal disease or joint trauma.

To schedule an appointment with one of our Outpatient Surgery Center, NC, please call 919-719-3070.


The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.