Can Joint Replacement Be an Outpatient Surgery?
Joint replacement can now be done safely as an outpatient surgery. Advances in surgical techniques, implant quality, and pain control measures have come together to make outpatient joint replacement a possibility for many adults suffering from hip, knee, or shoulder pain.
Since 2020, Medicare has covered outpatient total joint replacement under the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) & Ambulatory Surgical Center (ASC) Payment System Rule. This means patients have more options in choosing the location, quality of care, and the ability to save in the cost of their care.
Performing joint replacement as an outpatient surgery provides impressive benefits, such as:
Quicker return to everyday activities following surgery
More comfortable recovery at home
Lower risk of infection
Outpatient surgery is often more affordable for patients
Most patients will return home a few hours after surgery. This is possible thanks to:
Our ability to minimize pain using regional anesthesia and nerve blocks
Muscles around the joint are typically preserved
Accelerated PT (physical therapy), which provides quicker recovery
If you would like to go home soon after joint replacement surgery, a few requirements must be met. For example, having assistance at home is necessary for a few days after surgery, and we want to make sure you have a family member or friend who can help.
Not everyone is a candidate for outpatient joint replacement. Certain medical conditions, such as severe heart conditions, may impact your ability to go home the same day as your surgery. The need for hospital services like dialysis might also affect your length of stay.
Most people are better off going home the same day after their surgery. Multiple studies have shown that outpatient surgery is a more satisfactory experience for patients. It's a smart idea to educate yourself before surgery with the help of a surgeon who is experienced in outpatient joint replacement.
To learn more about outpatient joint replacement surgery and find out if you are a candidate, contact Dr. Troy Miles at (530) 246-2467.