It is not uncommon for a doctor to recommend to stop smoking before having a hip replacement surgery. Amongst other prep, your doctor will make recommendations in order to have a better surgery outcome.
IBJI recently chatted with Dr. Marc Angerame, board certified orthopedic surgeon with fellowship training in adult reconstruction and hip and knee replacement. Dr. Angerame talks about the importance of stopping smoking before hip replacement surgery and provides tips on how to stop smoking before hip replacement surgery. His responses—below—have been edited and condensed for space.
Why You Should Stop Smoking Before Hip Replacement
Smoking cessation is one of the most important tasks to accomplish prior to hip replacement surgery. Dr. Angerame explains, “The toxins in cigarette smoke negatively impact the inflammatory response within the body which is a necessary component of the healing process. According to orthopedic studies, active cigarette smokers can have a three times increased risk of wound complications. This increases the risk of surgical site infections that may necessitate future surgeries.”
Other risks include:
Three times increased risk of wound complications
Increased risk of surgical site infections
Longer stay in the hospital
Increased risk for readmission to the hospital
Poorer pain control
“If you are able to quit smoking approximately four to six weeks before surgery and remain smoke-free for about four weeks after, you reduce your risk of complications by up to 50%.”
Tips to Stop Smoking Before Hip Replacement
There are many avenues to help you quit smoking prior to your hip replacement. Dr. Angerame recommends multiple avenues, “Your primary care physician may help guide you in this endeavor. It may be possible to prescribe medications to help quell the urge to smoke. There are also counselors that may assist in the process. If you are looking to start the process to quit smoking, please visit smokefree.gov. This website allows for smoke-free texting programs, information on nicotine replacement therapy, and provides information regarding on smoke-free apps to assist you.”
Nowadays, life stressors seem to be meeting us at every corner. In the setting of stress, quitting smoking is a tall order. “One helpful suggestion that I tell patients in clinic who are trying to quit smoking is to decaffeinate. While caffeine helps us stay awake, it can cause tension and feelings of anxiety. Decaffeinate to help reduce stress which will aid in helping you quit smoking.”
You are not alone in your quest to quit smoking. IBJI physicians and staff care about you and your smoke-free future. While you may be prompted to quit smoking for your surgery, we urge you to quit for life. We are here and willing to help you along the way.
If you have been recommended to stop smoking for your hip replacement, IBJI hip specialists are ready to answer your questions and provide you with the proper resources.
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*The blog is for general information and educational purposes only regarding musculoskeletal conditions. The information provided does not constitute the practice of medicine or other healthcare professional services, including the giving of medical advice, and no doctor-patient relationship is formed. Readers with musculoskeletal conditions should seek the advice of their healthcare professionals without delay for any condition they have. The use of the information is at the reader’s own risk. The content is not intended to replace diagnosis, treatment or medical advice from your treating healthcare professional.