Pain Control

Pain is Rated on a 0-10 Scale

0 is no pain, 10 is the worst pain you have ever had.

Communication is key

Please let you nurse know when your pain is starting and do not wait until it gets too bad

Ice and elevate:

Doing this throughout the day will help with pain and also reduce swelling. When swelling is reduced, you are able to move your joint better and pain is decreased — Recommended times are 3-5 times a day for 20-30 minutes and after lots of activity


Changing positions frequently is important to prevent stiffness, swelling and alleviate pressure points.

Pain Medications:

Always take pain medications as instructed. Pain medications are often prescribed “as needed” which means they are taken only when you have pain. Oral narcotics are one option for pain medications which are often favored over IV narcotics as they last longer and have fewer side effects. Other medications used for pain are acetaminophen and anti-inflammatories. We want to be sure that the medication you take in the hospital will work for you before you go home.

Commonly Prescribed Oral Narcotics:

  • Hydrocodone with acetaminophen (brand names: Lortab, Vicodin, or Norco)
  • Oxycodone (brand name: Roxicodone)
  • Oxycodone with acetaminophen (brand name: Percocet, Roxicet)

It is often recommended to take pain medication approximately 30 -45 minutes before Physical Therapy so you are better able to participate.