FAQ - Orthopedic Doctors NYC - Hand and Wrist Pain
Is The SOS Hand and Wrist Center just for surgical patients?
No. The wrist and hand pain center is dedicated to the complete care of the hand and wrist. From diagnosis through treatment and rehabilitation services, the Center serves all types of patients. In many situations non-surgical hand wrist pain treatment options will be recommended before surgery. Back to top -->
Where can I learn more about the SOS Hand + Wrist doctors?
This website has more than just biographies in the “Meet The Docs” section. You can also visit www.soshand.com/blog to read the latest news and information, comment on the articles(penned by our specialists sometimes referred to by orthopedic doctors in NYC), post a question, subscribe to our RSS feed, or connect with us through all the popular social media forums like Facebook and LinkedIn. Back to top -->
Other than booking an appointment to come in for a consultation, where can I get more information on symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options for my condition?
Although the most popular way people gather information about their hand and wrist pain condition is through search engines like Google, most people find that sorting and sifting through all this information can be confusing and frustrating – either the information is too general or overly technical (just by typing in the name of your condition or symptoms, like “stiffness and swelling in my hands,” you will get more than 1.3 million references). That’s why we have organized patient-friendly information right here. We suggest you start with
- The SOS Hand + Wrist Complete Care Guide and Checklist . Use this valuable introductory tool to look at a chart of common symptoms and diagnoses. And then,
- Select from our library of 32 diagnosis and treatment reports to learn more about the topics of interest to you.
Other authoritative Orthopedic Hand Specialist sources include:
What should I Bring on the first visit?
- A list of your questions
- Your completed Intake Forms [link to form]
(it will save you time if this is done in advance).
- If required, referral from your primary care physician
- Previous operative reports
- Actual films and reports of any previous x-rays, MRI or CT scans
- List of allergies and any medications you are taking
- Previous medical records related to your condition
- Insurance information
- Government issued photo ID
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What happens if my condition involves other parts of the body like my back?
The Hand and Wrist Center is just one part of SOS. All patients have access to the other specialty groups (often referred to by orthopedic doctors in NYC) within the practice including spine care, joint care, sports and general orthopedic care, and foot and ankle care. For other non-orthopedic conditions, you will be referred appropriately. Back to top -->
When should I get a second opinion?
Many patients come to SOS to get a second opinion regarding hand and wrist pain. In addition, your SOS physician will understand and support your desire to do this as well. In fact, when consulting with your SOS physician, please feel free to discuss how a second opinion may help your diagnosis and treatment plan, and what questions to ask. The ultimate goal is your comfort and confidence with the plan of care. Back to top -->
How much is my visit or procedure going to cost me directly?
The administrative team at the SOS Hand + Wrist Center can assist you with determining how much of your care will be paid by insurance and how much will be paid directly by you. To get help with determining your estimated costs, please call 315-251-3100. Back to top -->
Even if my doctor recommends surgery, will he tell me about non-surgical alternatives?
Yes. Based on experience and the latest evidence-based research, your SOS physician will explain common non-surgical treatment options and how they compare to surgery. Surgery is usually the last resort (even if originally recommended by other orthopedic doctors in NYC outside our practice) and the majority of patients are prescribed non-surgical options like physical therapy before surgery is recommended. Back to top -->
If I choose to have surgery, can I meet with the anesthesiologist before the day of surgery?
Yes, for those with concerns about anesthesia that cannot be answered by your Syracuse Orthopedic Specialist, the SOS staff will arrange a consultation after your surgery has been scheduled. Back to top -->
What should I know about preparing for surgery?
Your doctor will provide a list of instructions to prepare you for your surgery, as well as hand and wrist pain treatments. The list below has common pre-operative advice. But please remember that this is not a substitute for your doctor’s specific instructions:
- Some of the latest research strongly suggests that working on strength and range of motion with a licensed physical therapist before surgery increases speed of recovery. Many people benefit from a pre-op consultation or a course of therapy with a physical therapist to increase strength and range of motion.
- Medications for blood thinners should be stopped 5 days before your surgery.
- 1 week before your procedure, please discontinue the use of medications like aspirin, ibuprofen, Motrin, Tylenol, Aleve, Celebrex, or any other similar drug.
- The morning of surgery, please skip any diabetic medications and make sure to tell your anesthesiologist.
- Medications that should not be interrupted, like heart medications, may be taken with no water (or tiny sips) with the approval of your doctor and anesthesiologist.
- Vitamins and herbal supplements should be stopped 2 weeks before surgery.
- When possible, have your post-operative prescriptions written and filled before the day of your procedure.
- Stop all food and liquids by midnight the night before your procedure.
- Remove nail polish and artificial nails. Clean under your fingernails.
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What should I expect after surgery?
In addition to the hand and wrist pain information on this page, you will receive instructions from our specialist (instructions could be provided in conjunction with orthopedic doctors in NYC practicing outside of SOS) recovery team after surgery.
- Know when to call your surgeon:
- Bleeding will not stop.
- Blue-black coloring in the fingers.
- Bandages or dressings become too tight (from excessive swelling).
- After keeping your hand and wrist elevated, your Bandages or dressings become too tight.
- Loss of sensation in your fingers or hand.
- Keep your hand elevated above your heart – even while sleeping.
- Taking your pain medication on schedule is the best way to manage the pain, but this does not mean you should increase the dose if you fall behind unless instructed to do so by your doctor. Do not take your next dose of pain medication before the directed time.
- Some nausea is normal, but if vomiting persists, call your doctor for an anti-nausea medication.
- Apply ice regularly in 15-20 minute intervals for the first 48-72 hours after surgery.
- Keep your dressing dry. Most medical supply stores have products to help with this, but you can do just as well with a clean 2-mill plastic bag, a strip of towel, and tape to seal it shut. If the wound gets excessively wet, arrange to have your dressing changed as soon as possible.
- Exercise or move unrestricted joints. Your doctor will tell you what joints not to move, but others will stiffen up if not mobilized. Your doctor or physical therapist should provide exercises to help you find appropriate exercises.
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Can I choose where to go for my physical therapy or do I need a referral?
Yes, you can choose your own therapist. However, your doctor may recommend a therapist who specializes in hand and wrist therapy. Choosing a good therapist is much like choosing your doctor – different experience, training, and expertise can make a big difference in your therapy experience. Back to top -->
What kinds of things can I do after surgery?
Your physician will explain your limitations and how long to avoid certain activities. Pain is a good indication of what to avoid, but in anticipation of your surgery, plan to be restricted from lifting things or working with the healing hand for an extended period of time, anywhere from two weeks to many months. Fortunately, you will know what to expect before surgery. Our orthopedic doctors will make educating you on the facts of your hand and wrist pain a top priority. Your doctor and physical therapist will provide a course of rehabilitation to get you the fastest possible recovery. Back to top -->