Nutrition Optimization & Weight Management

When patients are preparing for joint replacement surgery, adopting a healthy lifestyle is key to achieving the best possible results. This includes making sure that you get all of the key nutrients you need and maintaining a healthy weight.

Losing weight and maintaining that weight loss can be very difficult, especially in South Louisiana, where we have an abundance of delicious foods that are often not very healthy. It can also be challenging to ensure your diet contains the right mix of nutrients without the right guidance. Most of us are not trained in dietetics, and it can be overwhelming to try to choose the right foods on your own.

If you are overweight and need joint replacement surgery, do not despair--there is help available! Dr. Linschoten recognizes that weight management and nutritional optimization can be a challenge for many patients, and has sought to offer easy, sustainable options for his patients to take the guesswork out of the process.

The Importance of a Healthy Weight for Joint Replacement

We use a form of measurement called body mass index (BMI) to determine whether a patient is within a healthy weight range in relation to their height. It is calculated by taking your weight in kilograms divided by the square of your height in meters, though you can also use a BMI calculator to quickly calculate your BMI. A high BMI can be an indicator that a patient has a high amount of body fat, which means they are more susceptible to certain health problems and complications with surgery.

Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is a measure of the relationship between your height and weight. It is very important that patients achieve a BMI of under 40 before they can be cleared for joint replacement surgery. There are many studies that have found when a patient’s BMI is over 40, the risk of wound complications and infection increases dramatically. For this reason, many insurance companies and hospitals are moving towards postponing a joint replacement procedure until the patient’s BMI is under 40. Though this may delay your surgery, it is ultimately for your own safety.

Additionally, losing weight can help reduce the stress placed on your joints. Hips and knees are weight-bearing joints that take on a great deal of stress. By losing weight, you can reduce the stress on your hip or knee implants, which can help improve the overall longevity of the implant.

How Nutritional Optimization Aids in Recovery

Surgical procedures like hip replacement or knee replacement surgery place a lot of demands on the body. Getting the right proteins and omega acids in your diet can help reduce your risk of infection after surgery and promote healing. These nutrients help to support your immune system, which can greatly reduce your chances of developing an infection after surgery.

Though Dr. Linschoten is highly skilled in helping patients with infected hip or knee replacements, he knows that infections are very taxing on the patient, both physically and often financially. If a patient develops an infection after a joint replacement, they will either require a longer hospital stay or will need to be readmitted. For this reason, Dr. Linschoten goes above and beyond to help his patients avoid infections by giving them the nutritional guidance they need to help reduce their risks, in addition to the highly attentive care and detailed recovery instructions provided by his team and the hospital.

Weight Management & Nutrition Optimization Assistance with Dr. Linschoten

To help his patients with weight management and nutritional needs prior to joint replacement surgery, Dr. Linschoten helps his patients get the resources and tools they need to be successful. In conjunction with Baton Rouge General and Nestle Health Science, Dr. Linschoten is able to offer the following options to his patients.

Health & Wellness Center at Baton Rouge General

If a patient needs to lose weight and lower their BMI prior to joint replacement surgery, Dr. Linschoten can refer them to the Health & Wellness Center at Baton Rouge General. At the Health & Wellness Center, patients can get counseling on nutrition, fitness, and managing conditions like diabetes. Patients can work with a dietician to develop a healthy, sustainable diet that will help with losing weight and maintaining weight loss so that they can be cleared for joint replacement surgery. With nutritional counseling, patients can learn healthy recipes and how to shop for healthy foods at the grocery store, so that they are equipped to make the right dietary choices.

Located on the Baton Rouge General site, the Health & Wellness center also allows Dr. Linschoten to coordinate closely with the hospital and dietician to help the patient achieve their goals. With the patient’s care teams working together, patients are set up for success.

Nestlé IMPACT® Shakes

Dr. Linschoten has also been working with Nestlé to offer their IMPACT® immune support shakes to patients undergoing joint replacement surgery, especially for patients with complex cases. Nestlé IMPACT® shakes contain a blend of arginine, omega 3 fatty acids from fish oil, and dietary nucleotides, which are all key nutrients in supporting the immune system. These shakes support the nutritional needs of patients undergoing major surgery like joint replacement by helping to reduce the risk of infection for patients.

Dr. Linschoten has begun recommending the IMPACT® shakes to patients because they are an easy, effective, and low-cost way to help patients reduce their risk of postoperative infections. Because infections can be very detrimental to the success of the procedure and are very taxing on patients, Dr. Linschoten believes it is critical to do everything he can to help patients mitigate these risks. Many orthopaedic surgeons do not offer this level of support for patients in preparing for surgery and recovery, so Dr. Linschoten is happy to help provide a solution. Additionally, Dr. Linschoten has used the IMPACT® shakes himself before and after a surgical procedure, and was very pleased with the results and ease of use.

The Nestlé IMPACT® shakes are 6oz protein shakes that patients drink 3 times daily in addition to their meals. Patients drink the shakes 5 days prior to joint replacement surgery and 5 days after surgery. By simply following this process, patients can reduce the risk of postoperative infections by 51% and reduce the length of their hospital stay by 15%. Though the shakes are available via online retailers like Amazon, Dr. Linschoten often has cases of Nestlé IMPACT® available at his office to provide to patients.

Weight Loss Surgery

In addition to diet and exercise programs, there are also a variety of weight loss surgery options that have been proven to be safe and effective. If surgery is needed to help a patient progress with weight loss, Dr. Linschoten will refer his patients to trusted weight loss surgeons in the area.

Learn More About Nutrition & Weight Management Prior to Joint Replacement

Dr. Linschoten provides his patients with the resources they need to be successful with weight management and nutrition prior to joint replacement surgery. To learn more about these options, please call our office at (225) 478-8722. We are happy to help!