You may be asked to stop taking aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), Clopidogrel (Plavix), warfarin (Coumadin), and other blood thinners.
Ask your doctor which drugs you should still take on the day of the surgery.
Discuss any possible bleeding disorders or other medical conditions that you may have.
You will have blood samples taken in case you need a blood transfusion.
Let your doctor know if you have a cold, flu fever, herpes breakout or other illness prior to surgery. This may require that your reschedule your procedure.
Do not smoke. This will help you to recover quicker.
On the Day of the Surgery
Since you may have general anesthesia, you will usually be asked not to drink or eat anything after midnight the night before the surgery.
Take the drugs your doctor told you to take with a small sip of water.
Your doctor or nurse will tell you when to arrive at the hospital.
You will have a dressing over your surgical site for the next few days. You will need to keep if dry and avoid showering until the wound is no longer draining.
Most patients can go home the same day.
The surgical area can be quite painful, expect to remain on pain medication for the first week or longer following surgery. Applying ice packs to the site may also provide additional relief and help reduce any swelling, but keep the incision dry.
Most patients feel much better within a couple of weeks, but full recovery takes several weeks to a few months, based on the complexity of the repair.
Recovery: what to expect in the next few weeks
Due to the location of the surgery, some patients prefer to sleep in a recliner or propped up for the first week.
You will need an immobilizer to protect your shoulder. Your surgeon will advise how long you need to wear the sling.
While you may feel better after a couple of weeks, you need to follow your physician’s orders on recommended activities.
You will be prescribed a series of appointments for physical therapy to help regain strength in your shoulder.
While you will be able to resume light activities, your physician may advise against participating in sports.