Your stay in hospital will usually vary depending on your progress. Once you are mobilising safely, heel walking or with crutches, you will be discharged home as soon as suitable arrangements can be made.
Planning for going home begins as soon as you arrive in hospital, if you have any fears or concerns regarding discharge please discuss these with your named nurse.
Your named nurse will ask you and your carers about your social circumstances, this is just to ensure that you will be able to manage certain tasks when you go home such as washing, dressing and cooking.
If your named nurse feels you and your carer will require extra support she will discuss this with you, and with your permission arrange for you to discuss your needs with the hospital Social Worker and Occupational Therapist.
Please discuss your transport arrangements home with your named nurse before your day of discharge. It is possible in some instances to organise hospital transport, if required.
The day of your discharge
On the day of your discharge your named nurse will give you some things to take home with you, these will include:
A letter for your GP (in some instances this will be posted) This should be handed in to your GP by either a relative or friend on the next working day following your discharge.
Medication Any medication you have brought into hospital will be returned to you. You will also be given a 7-day supply of any new medications. The nurse will advise you on how and when to take these.
Dressings / Plaster Cast All dressings should be left undisturbed until you are seen in clinic when the nurse will remove your sutures. If your bandages become loose, or you have any concerns regarding your bandage, please contact Musculo Skeletal Outpatients Clinic or the France Clinic at Newcastle General Hospital, who will be happy to help.
Outpatient Clinic Appointment you will be given an appointment to be reviewed in clinic. If transport is required then this can be arranged by contacting your GP, providing a week’s notice where possible. If for any reason you are unable to attend your appointment please contact the Outpatient Department to rearrange the appointment.
Care Plan If you have a care package arranged you would receive a copy of the care plan from the social worker before your discharge home. This is for your own information.
Discharge Record This provides details about your stay and is for your own information.
Patient Information Please take home any written information given to you during your stay and please do not hesitate to use the contact numbers if you require any further advice.
Valuables Please ensure you have all your valuables with you.
General advice after discharge
The period of convalescence you will require will depend on the nature of your surgery and your individual circumstances.
Exercises Keep doing the exercises you have been shown to keep your other joints mobile. Your foot should remain elevated, when sitting, for at least 2 weeks following surgery, unless you are advised otherwise. If you experience any problems then please contact the ward or Outpatients Department.
Work How soon you are able to return to work will depend on the type of job you do. You should discuss this with your consultant when you see him in the Outpatient Department.
Wound care Keep your wound dry until your stitches have been removed. Your stitches will be removed when you attend the Outpatient Clinic. Once these have been removed, you can bath or shower, as you feel able.
Pain Take your painkillers as prescribed. Do not take more than the stated dose. If you are experiencing increased pain in your foot, if you have any pain or swelling in your calf or if you have any chest pain please contact the ward or your GP for advice.
Cars and driving It is inadvisable to drive whilst wearing a cast, splint or restrictive bandage. Always check with your insurance company before starting to drive again.
It is not the responsibility of your consultant to make this decision. He will advise when he feels driving will cause you no harm.
Return of equipment
Please return all walking aids to the Physiotherapy Department at the hospital in which you stayed, when they are no longer required. All other equipment should be returned to the loan equipment store it came from, ring them and they will collect it (the numbers are outlined at the back).
You will be followed up as an outpatient at regular intervals after your discharge from hospital. Please use this opportunity to ask questions and discuss any concerns you may have. You are also welcome to call the ward or Nurse Practitioner for advice, following your discharge from hospital.
Below are some numbers you may find useful once you have been discharged, please do not hesitate to contact any number for additional help or advice, the staff would be happy to help you.
Fracture Clinic Newcastle General Hospital: (0191) 233 6161 Ext: 22813
Musculo-skeletal Outpatients Freeman Hospital: (0191) 2231109/0191 2231040 Direct Line
Newcastle General Hospital: (0191) 233 6161
Ward 20 Ext: 23520
Ward 21 Ext: 23521
Ward 35 Ext: 23535
Freeman Hospital: (0191) 233 6161
Ward 17 Ext: 37017
Ward 18 Ext: 37018
Ward 19 Ext: 37019
Ward 20 Ext: 37020
Newcastle General Hospital: (0191) 233 6161. Ask the switchboard operator to Bleep 1899 or DECT Phone 29370
Freeman Hospital: (0191) 233 6161. Ask the switchboard to contact the Senior 1 Physiotherapist Orthopaedics.
Foot and Ankle Nurse Practitioners
Newcastle general Hospital: (0191) 233 6161. Ask the switchboard to Bleep 1517
Newcastle General Hospital: (0191) 233 6161. Ask the switchboard operator for the Occupational Therapy Department and ask for the Orthopaedic Therapist.
Freeman Hospital: (0191) 233 6161. Ask the switchboard operator for the Occupational Therapy Department and ask for the Orthopaedic Therapist.
Contact the relevant hospital switchboard and ask to speak to the Social Worker.
Pharmacy Help Line
Newcastle General Hospital: (0191) 2824179 Monday to Friday 9.00 am – 5.00 pm.
Freeman Hospital: (0191) 223 1230 Monday to Friday 9.00 am - 5.00 pm.
Health Information Service (0800) 66 55 44.
Newcastle - (0191) 219 4662
North Tyneside - (0191) 200 6184
South Tyneside - (0191) 454 0927
Northumberland - (01670) 730595
Gateshead - (0191) 402 6433 (ask for home loans)
Durham - (01388) 812 812