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Before Surgery


To make recovery easier and less stressful:
  • Shop ahead for disposable plates and foods that can be easily prepared, such as frozen dinners.
  • If surgery will be done on the hand you write with, sign some checks ahead of time.

  • Arrange for someone to drive you home after surgery.

  • Ask your surgeon how long you will need to be away from work.

To reduce the risk of complications:

  • Stop smoking and do not take aspirin for at least one week before surgery.

  • Don't eat or drink anything (even water) for eight hours before surgery.

During Surgery

Your surgeon will discuss the type of anesthesia you will receive during surgery.

A general anesthetic lets you sleep. A regional anesthetic numbs your hand and arm. A local anesthetic numbs just the area of surgery.

With local anesthesia, you may feel some discomfort from the tourniquet (cuff) on your arm, which is needed to prevent blood flow to your hand during surgery.

Risks and Complications

Your surgeon will discuss the risks of surgery with you, including:
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Severe swelling
  • Unrelieved pain
  • Impaired circulation
  • Tingling or numbness
  • Impaired movement
  • Infection