If I go straight home from hospital will I have carers to help?
There are rehabilitation teams including carers, physios and OTs (occupational therapists) that can visit you at home for up to 6 weeks after discharge. This service is free for up to 6 weeks. This team can help you with washing and dressing yourself, making meals and promoting your independence at home in day to day tasks. Carers will call to your home once, twice or three times daily depending on your needs. If you have family support at home then you may not require carers to help.
How will I complete my shopping and housework?
There are local voluntary agencies available that can assist with these tasks. Sometimes there is a fee involved for this service. Ask the occupational therapist on your ward for more details.
When will I get a prosthetic limb?
If you decide that you would like a prosthetic limb, a referral will be made to the limb fitting service. Before you are measured and casted for a limb your wound will need to be healed and the swelling in your stump gone down. The earliest this will happen is 6-8 weeks post operation.
You will have an appointment at the limb fitting service to discuss your needs and receive physiotherapy at the centre before you can take the limb home.
I have been told I am having an amputation, now what?
The physiotherapist and occupational therapist will try to meet with you before your surgery to talk you through the rehabilitation process and answer any questions.
We will discuss the following:
- How do you normally mobilise and manage your day to day tasks?
- Do you have any support at home?
- What is your home environment like?
We recommend that you bring in your everyday clothes so that you can practice dressing yourself after you operation. We can provide instruction on best ways to do this.
How will I mobilize after my operation?
You will be measured for a wheelchair by the occupational therapist on the ward. You will be provided with a permanent wheelchair by your local wheelchair services. We will loan you a wheelchair for using on the ward. We recommend that you do not use crutches as it is very important to protect the stump and allow it to heal. A wheelchair will allow the stump to remain elevated to promote healing.
Will my wheelchair fit around my house?
The occupational therapist will arrange for a visit to your house to assess for any adaptions or equipment needed to promote your independence at home.
When will I start rehabilitation after my operation?
The Physiotherapist and OT will visit you as soon as appropriate after your operation usually on day 1. The speed of rehabilitation progress is very dependent on the individual; we will adapt your rehab to suit your needs and ability.
- We will start with practicing moving in the bed and sitting on the edge of the bed
- We will progress to using a slide board to help you transfer into and out your wheelchair
- We will teach you how to use your wheelchair and self-propel (using big wheels moving yourself) around the ward
- As you progress we will try to replicate your home set up to practice getting in and out of bed onto your wheelchair and on and off the toilet
How long will I be in hospital?
Length of time in hospital is dependent on how long your wound takes to heal and if you have any other medical conditions that need attention. When the medical team are happy with how you have healed after your amputation the OT and physio will discuss discharge plans with you.
How will I control my pain?
The doctors and nurses will be closely monitoring your pain relief. The pain team will recommend the best pain medication for you. We recommend that you ask for pain medication before therapy rehab sessions.
Will I go home straight from hospital?
This is dependent on how you have progressed with rehabilitation and what your home environment is like. There are many options for discharge. If you are requiring assistance with getting in and out of your wheelchair – we often recommend that you go onto an inpatient rehabilitation unit for further practice. This rehabilitation unit will be in your local borough. If you are managing independently on the ward and your home is suitable then you could be discharged straight home.
Who can I contact for further information or advice?
If you have any further questions please ask your occupational therapist or physiotherapist. We are here to help.
Ward Level 8 Tower
01273 696955 Ext. 4341
This information is intended for patients receiving care in Brighton & Hove or Haywards Heath.
The information here is for guidance purposes only and is in no way intended to replace professional clinical advice by a qualified practitioner.