Catholic Health received the green light to begin elective surgeries in May and its hospitals are working hard to reschedule patients left waiting for relief from joint pain. With St. Joseph Campus converted to a COVID-19 treatment center, the healthcare systems’ other sites – Kenmore Mercy, Mount St. Mary’s, Sisters of Charity and Mercy Hospitals – now have capacity to share the orthopedic (knee, hip replacement, and elective spine) surgical schedule.

However, as the hospitals resume normal service and the surgical team clears their backlogs, some patients are waiting to reschedule their surgery. Orthopedic surgeons are working to prioritize these procedures and even scheduling additional block time at the hospital.

Any delay in surgery can be painful, so what do patients who are awaiting surgeries do in the meantime?

Staying on Top of Orthopedic Care Remains Important

Holly Grimm, BSN, OCN, RN, a patient educator for Kenmore Mercy Hospital’s pre-operative orthopedic classes, offers some advice. Below are some suggestions for non-surgical treatment of common orthopedic problems.

1Stay in touch with your orthopedic surgeon. You may need to schedule a consultation to work with the surgeon to best manage your issue and pain.

Until your surgery can be rescheduled, the following treatments may be helpful:

▶️ Low impact exercises and stretching may help to keep your joints from becoming stiff and painful. Stop or change your activities to avoid doing things that cause painful symptoms. Avoid heavy lifting and strenuous activity. Rest your injury.

▶️ Your surgeon or primary doctor can recommend and/or prescribe medication that may include anti-inflammatory drugs to control pain and swelling.

▶️ APPLY either ice (or heat) to the affected joint, whichever is more effective and comfortable for you.

Talk to Your Surgeon

Some conditions still require emergency surgery, while others can be managed a little longer. If you have any questions or problems during the pandemic, it is important to maintain communication with your surgeon to keep your body healthy and avoid larger, more severe issues down the line.

Find a Orthopedic Specialist Near You
Call (716) 923-7153

Find an Orthopedic Specialist Near You
Call (716) 923-7153