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General Patient Information

What happens next

Once your doctor has made a diagnosis, you might require the following:

1. Conservative treatment including
  • Medication
  • Splints / Cast
  • Cortisone injections
  • Rehabilitation
  • Follow up appointment
2. Surgery

If you require surgery to correct your medical condition, the following will happen.

The doctor and his staff will provide you with the following information:


  • Type of surgery
  • Date of surgery
  • Diagnosis code and procedural codes for surgery
  • Time of admission
  • When patient must stop eating / drinking before surgery
  • Indication of length of hospital stay.
2.1. Minor surgery (e.g. Arthroscopy)

  • If you are medically fit for surgery you will be admitted on the day of surgery
  • Surgery will be performed as discussed with your doctor.
  • If necessary a Physiotherapist will visit you for exercises.
  • You will be discharged as soon as your condition allows, your pain is under control, and you have no side effects from anaesthesia.
  • Follow up appointment must be arranged with our receptionist.
2.2. Major surgery
  • Major surgery, for example, hip and knee replacements.
  • Most medical aids will require the following before authorization for the above procedures.
    • Diagnosis and codes
    • Procedural codes.
    • Letter of motivation from your specialist.
    • Radiology report.
    • Physician report declaring fit for surgery.
    • Some medical aids require a patient questionnaire to determine the level of pain and loss of function prior to surgery for example:  KOOS / HOOS score.
    • Date for surgery.
    • To prepare the skin for surgery you must wash with Hibiscrub soap starting three days before surgery.
    • Some patients carry bacteria in their noses.  Therefore you will be provided with Bactroban Nasal ointment.  Apply 4 times a day also starting three days before surgery.
    • You will be admitted at 12h00 the day before surgery.
    • You will be visited by your Specialist, Anaesthetist and Physician to ensure everything is in place and all questions are answered.  The physiotherapist and ward staff will also introduce themselves to you and explain your stay and rehabilitation.
    • Routine blood tests will be performed and x-rays will be taken pre- surgery.
    • Continue to take routine medication as prescribed by your doctor.  The Physician and Anaesthetist will answer your questions regarding home medication.
    • If necessary you may ask for a sleeping tablet.  For some patients it is difficult to get a good night’s rest in a strange environment.
2.3. On day of surgery
  • Using enemas is no longer part of our protocol.  Before going to theatre please go through normal toilet routine and then have a Hibiscrub bath or shower.
  • Before going to theatre you will receive a drip with antibiotics.
  • Pre-medication is a tablet to take away the stress of the situation.  It will be given to you one hour before surgery.
3. Theatre
  • Your Anaesthetist will administer anaesthetics as discussed.  It might consist of a spinal or general anaesthetic or a combination of the two.
  • A urinary catheter will be inserted.
  • Surgery will be performed.
  • After surgery you will be transferred to high care to monitor blood pressure, oxygen levels, urine output and heart rate.  It will also allow the staff to give you more pain medication if necessary.
  • When your condition has stabilized you will be transferred to the general ward for rehabilitation.  Most patients stay for 3 to 5 days.  When discharged you will be able to independently
  • Get out of bed
  • Walk and climb stairs with crutches
  • Look after your own hygiene.
4. Discharge
  • You will receive medication for thrombosis and pain control.
  • A follow up appointment should be made in 14 days’ time with our Receptionist in ou rooms for an appointment.
  • The sutures will be removed in 14 to 20 days after surgery.
  • Please ensure to take all x-rays.
  • As a medical team we endeavour to provide the best service within our power.  However the interaction between a patient and his / her medical aid is beyond the scope of this practice.

It is solely the patient’s responsibility to engage with their insurer with regards to:

  • Obtaining authorization for surgical procedures.
  • Inclusions, exclusions, co-payments etc. according to the specific medical fund and its options.
5. What you need to know from the physiotherapist
  • With minor surgery the therapist will see you dae one post-operatively for mobilization and discharge exercises and advice.
  • With major surgery you will be visited prior surgery to explain the rehabilitation process and goals to be reached before discharge.
  • For some minor surgery, for example knee arthroscopy, ankle or foot operations the uses of crutches are beneficial.  For all major surgery, for example a total replacement, it is compulsory to ambulate with crutches or a frame.  If you have these walking aids bring it with you to the hospital.  Otherwise it will be provided to you from the Orthotist in the hospital.
  • Any other helping aids, for example toilet seat raiser, would also be provided before discharge.
6. Dresscode

Men : T-shirt and shorts

Women : Aa two piece is fine or if you want to you can wear a nighty or gown

Shoes : No flip flops or slippers.  Close shoes or bare feet are best.