Before Your Surgery
Some injuries and conditions are best treated with surgery. Once you have made the decision to proceed with surgery, there are a number of additional steps.
Funding your surgery
Even if your injury has been covered by ACC, Dr. Boyle will need to complete an application to ACC to fund your surgery, called an Assessment Report and Treatment Plan (ARTP). The ARTP approval process can take between 10 days and several months, depending on the nature of the injury and whether ACC request any additional information. Once the ARTP has been approved, we will contact you to arrange a suitable date for your surgery. Please click here for more information on the ACC process.
If you have private health insurance, and your condition is not covered by ACC, you can use your private health insurance to fund your surgery. In this case, we will provide you with an estimate of your surgical expenses that you can then forward to your insurance company to obtain an approval for your surgery. In some cases, the insurance provider will also request copies of clinical documentation and referrals, which we can provide as required.
If you do not have private health insurance, and your surgery is not covered by ACC, you may chose to fund your surgery yourself. In this case, you can simply contact the office for an estimate of your surgical expenses and then find a suitable date for your surgery.
Paperwork and information pack
We will provide you with a special pre-operative information pack, that will include a health questionnaire and other forms that you will need to complete and send back to the hospital, in addition to instructions on when to stop eating and drinking before your surgery, what medications to stop and when to arrive at hospital.
Crutches or Braces
If you require crutches, a sling, or a brace, then these will usually be provided for you at the hospital on the day of surgery.
If you have complex medical conditions, we may arrange for you to see a specialist physician (eg. cardiologist, respiratory specialist) or an anaesthetist in order to make sure you that you are safe for surgery. Occasionally, these doctors may arrange for additional medical investigations (eg. blood tests, echocardiogram, lung function testing) prior to your surgery, just to be safe.
Preparing yourself for surgery
Rehabilitation before your surgery
In order to get the best possible result after your surgery, it may be necessary to undergo a period of rehabilitation before your surgery, often called "pre-habilitation" (eg. patients undergoing ACL reconstruction often require a period of physiotherapy before their surgery, to regain their knee range of motion, control swelling, and improve strength pre-operatively.) We will advise you on this important process.
Smoking elevates the risk of anaesthetic and cardiovascular complications, impairs the healing of tendon, bone and skin, and is associated with post-operative infection, tendon repair failure and inferior patient outcomes. It is very important important that smokers quit smoking for at least 2 weeks before surgery and not start smoking for at least 3 months after surgery in order to reduce these risks as much as possible. Dr. Boyle may not be willing to operate on certain patients who continue to smoke, due to the unacceptably high risk of complications.