This article describes the development and impact of a hospital-based education program for patients undergoing knee or hip replacement surgery. The program consists of three components: a preoperative 1-hour education session conducted by a case manager providing information on what to expect from the procedure; a discussion by previous patients addressing unnecessary fears; and elective membership after discharge in a hospital-based support group providing patients with information on how to live with arthritis and with new joints. The impact of the program on patient outcomes was investigated through a 5-year retrospective study. Data were collected from patients to assess their perceptions of the program and of the outcome of their surgery. Results of the study indicated favorable impact on both patient care outcomes.
(C) 1993 National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses