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Learning the Ropes Before Total Joint Replacement Surgery

Ronald LaButti, D.O. helps patients understand surgery procedures before joint replacement is done.

By: Sara Dale | Category: Health & Fitness | Issue: January 2007

Dr. Ronald S. LaButti

It’s exciting to know you are scheduled for total joint replacement surgery. You know it will relieve the constant pain you have dealt with for more years than you care to recount. You also know you will be mobile again and able to enjoy many activities you were previously forced to forsake. But, that’s about all you know about the revolutionary procedure you are preparing to undergo and what to expect afterwards.

“We want to change all that,” says Ronald S. LaButti, D.O., orthopedic surgeon with Central States Orthopedic Specialists, Inc. “That’s why we are now offering our patients pre-operative education and physical therapy. We want every patient to know exactly what to expect before joint replacement surgery.”

Here’s How it Works
A month or two prior to surgery, patients are scheduled for pre-operative education and physical therapy. “This is one-on-one time for that particular patient,” says Rob Ellison, therapy director. “Any and all questions are addressed, as well as a thorough evaluation of the patient’s physical condition and therapy needs. In some instances, a patient will need to do four to six weeks of pre-operative exercises and physical therapy to prepare for surgery. On the other end of the spectrum, there will be patients who are in good shape and need only attend the one informational session.”

It is understandable patients have a multitude of questions and concerns prior to total joint replacement surgery. “The pre-operative education and physical therapy is designed to increase patients’ comfort zone and recovery time following surgery,” Dr. LaButti says. “We don’t want them to be faced with any surprises along the way. We start the session off by having the patient view an informational video, as well as by providing them with a pamphlet containing detailed information about the surgery.”

Subjects covered during the pre-operative sessions include:
It is determined what type of assisted walking device (crutches or walker) the patient will use immediately following surgery, as well as instructions on how to use it.

Various tips on how to avoid pain, as well as how to maximize the new knee or hip’s range of motion are discussed

Individualized physical assessment: If the patient is overweight, elderly, sedentary or has specific rehabilitation needs, additional physical therapy will be scheduled before surgery. To expedite recovery, general conditioning or strengthening of upper and/or lower body extremities is often recommended before and following surgery for some patients.

A “show and tell” of sorts:
Patients are shown the CPM (continuous passive motion) machine, a device used to help rehabilitate an arm or leg.

Patients view actual models of the hip and knee replacements to give them a visual, as well as a better understanding of how the replacements function

Tours of the recovery room are provided.

“By working with our patients before their surgery, we feel we are providing a better quality of service overall – from beginning to end,” says Dr. LaButti. “We believe this new pre-operative service greatly enhances the results of total joint replacement surgery from both a physical and mental standpoint.”

For more information about Ronald S. LaButti, D.O. and total joint replacement surgery, call Central States Orthopedic Specialists, Inc. at (918) 481-2767 or log onto

For more information, contact

Ronald S. LaButti, D.O.

Central States Orthopedic Specialists, Inc.

(918) 481-2767

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