Patient Info

Preparation for admission

  • Consult your doctor about the details and risks of the surgery before setting up a date for it.
  • Inform doctors of any pre-existing disease, such as heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, anaemia and asthma. These conditions should be assessed and stabilised before the surgery.
  • Inform the hospital if you are on regular medication. You may be asked to stop for a while if necessary.
  • Blood test and electrocardiogram should be performed before the surgery. X-ray and MRI images should be taken for the surgical areas in advance as well.
  • Bring along some loose clothing to make it more convenient for certain procedures.
  • Bring a pair of slip-on shoes. Try not to wear slippers since they may be too slippery.
  • The hospital will provide you with personal hygiene products or you may bring your own.

On Surgery Day
  • No eating or drinking 6 hours prior to the surgery.
  • Bring along relevant test results, X-ray images and MRI images.
  • Bring along any medication you are on for the nurses' record. Your doctor will tell you after the surgery when you can resume medication and whether the frequency and dosage need to be adjusted.
  • Our physiotherapists will instruct you on breathing exercise if necessary. Please practise as advised.
  • Cleanse the surgical areas.
  • Duration of different surgeries vary. In average, a surgery usually takes 3 to 4 hours.

After the surgery
  • Movement should be restricted.
  • With a stable condition, you are allowed to eat 4 to 6 hours after surgery.
  • Breathing exercise should be done frequently to prevent lung infection.
  • You will be given intravenous fluid supplement or blood transfusion if necessary.
  • Oral, intramuscular, intravenous or other forms of analgesics will be arranged to help you control pain.
  • There will be a drain inserted in the surgical wound. It will be removed in 2 to 3 days after surgery if the wound is healing well.
  • You may need to use a bedpan.

Rehabilitation at the Hospital
  • Physiotherapists will work on your rehabilitation so that you can regain mobility, strength and the ability to walk.
  • After a lower limb surgery, physiotherapists will help you walk with a walking frame. You can use a stick later on as the situation improves.
  • The progress of rehabilitation depends largely on your strength, body weight and the ability to manage pain. The type and extent of surgery also affect your ability to participate in physiotherapy training sessions.
  • A comprehensive range of training sessions will be arranged by our physiotherapists at the Department of Physiotherapy, which is fully-equipped and situated on the 19/F of Li Shu Pui Block.

Leaving the hospital
You can leave when...
  • Your wound or joint is stable.
  • You can walk safely with appropriate walking aid.
  • You can walk on stairs safely if necessary.
  • You know the proper way to get dressed, sit, walk and perform other routine activities.
  • You know how to exercise at home.
  • You may need to come back to the Hospital for regular consultations or rehabilitation training.

Possible complications
Please consult your doctor for specific risks related to the surgery. Below are some common complications:
  • Deteriorations of pre-existing diseases like heart disease, hypertension, stroke and diabetes etc
  • Wound infection or delayed wound healing
  • Bleeding from the wound or haematoma formation
  • Deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism or fat embolism
  • Dislocation or infection of the replaced joint
  • Loosening of the prosthetic joint
  • Nerve palsy
  • Pressure sore led by prolonged bed rest

Plaster Care

What is a plaster?
The traditional plaster is made of bandage and impregnated with calcium sulphate salt. The modern ones are made of plastic materials, which are lighter, firmer and have better ventilation properties.

Indications for Use of Plaster
  • To hold the fractured segments in the best position
  • To protect injured or repaired soft tissues
  • To maintain the limb or spine in the functional position

How to apply the plaster?
  • Clean the limb to which the plaster is applied.
  • Apply layers of cotton and soft materials to the limb.
  • When the plaster hardens, it will release heat and the patient will feel mild increase in warmth in the limb.
  • For traditional plaster that hardens in 5 to 10 minutes, it takes 2 to 3 days to dry completely.
  • For modern plaster, it takes only 20 minutes to dry completely.

How to look after the plaster?
  • Before the plaster is completely dry, always place it on soft surface such as a pillow. Do not rest it on any sharp object or place any heavy object onto it.
  • If one feels itchy inside the plaster, medications often help. Do not use sharp objects to scratch inside the plaster. Ventilating with a fan often brings relief.
  • Be careful with the edges of the plaster and the body areas surrounding it. Clean the non-covered area daily.
  • Do not wet the plaster. Wrap the limb with a plastic bag when bathing.
  • If there is any problem with the plaster, please come back to the Hospital any time. Do not try to remove it yourself.
  • For plaster applied to upper limbs, the fingertips should be placed above the heart level. Use a support aid when standing, walking and other activities. For plaster applied to lower limbs, place a pillow below to reduce swelling and pain.
  • Exercise the movable body parts as often as possible to improve circulation, reduce swelling and prevent muscle wasting.

Return to the Hospital when the following happens:
  • The plaster becomes tighter and tighter and causes pain and excessive swelling.
  • Finger or toe tips become cool. Nails are bluish or excessively white in colour.
  • Increased numbness and weakness of the injured limb.
  • Skin sores around the plaster.
  • There is foul smelling discharge from the plaster.
  • The plasters is broken, loosened or softened.

How is the plaster removed?

The electric plaster saw
  • The electric plaster saw
  • The plaster can be removed once the fracture has been healed, as recommended by the doctor.
  • Electric saw is used to remove the plaster.
  • The patient must not move the plastered limb during plaster removal.
  • During the process, the saw generates a loud noise. The affected limb may feel some warmth and being shaken. No harm will be done to the patient, as the saw is safe for removing plaster.
  • Since the skin area beneath the plaster often has become dry, clean the area with mild soap and warm water and then apply lotion after drying.
  • Receive progressive exercise and training to regain muscle strength, as recommended by the doctor.