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Foot and Ankle Service

A Patient's Guide to Foot and Ankle Surgery

At Hospital for Special Surgery, we believe that patient and family education is a critical component of providing excellent patient care. We designed this booklet to help guide you and your family through the journey from the pre- to postsurgical phases of care. Explore the interactive version below or download the pdf.


Preparation for Foot and Ankle Surgery

  • Pre-Surgical Screening
  • Pre-Admission Testing
  • Arranging for Transportation Home After Surgery
  • Instructions on Aspirin and Anti-Inflammatory Medications
  • Smoking Cessation
  • Fasting Instructions
  • Showering or Bathing Prior to Surgery
  • Planning for Help at Home
  • Physical Therapy Planning Before Surgery

Day of Surgery

  • What to Bring to the Hospital
  • What to Wear to the Hospital on Your Surgery Day
  • Directions and Parking
  • Where to Go on the Day of Surgery
  • Patient Liaisons
  • Anesthesia
  • Administration of Regional Anesthesia
  • Choosing to Sleep


  • Pain Management
  • Positioning and Medication
  • Discharge Instructions
  • Going Home After Ambulatory Foot and Ankle Surgery

At Home

  • Food Preparation
  • Surgical Site Care
  • Prevention of Blood Clots
  • Common Post-Operative Reactions
  • Pain Management at Home
  • Tips for a Successful Recovery
  • Physical Therapy
  • Recovery at Home
  • Stairs
  • Follow up Appointment