Trauma and Orthopaedics

About this service

The Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trauma & Orthopaedic Department cares for people with acute injuries from accidents and long-term conditions of the musculoskeletal system. This includes bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves.

We have a number of internationally recognised surgeons who carry out pioneering surgery on areas including:

  • hands
  • feet and ankles (particularly complex surgery)
  • knees
  • hips (in young adults)
  • joints (keyhole surgery known as an arthroscopy)

If you have injured a bone, joint, ligament or tendon in an accident (trauma) you’ll be referred to our Fracture Clinic.

Contact information

Joint replacement operations

Where to find us

The Trauma and Orthopaedics department does not have one physical location. Your patient letters will tell you where to go for any appointments, therefore please ensure that you read your letters very carefully.

Joint replacement operations

Your hip or knee replacement surgery will take place at St Michael’s Hospital in Hayle, or Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro. Your admissions letter will tell you where to go.

Information about joint replacement operations

An orthopaedic consultant will discuss with you and decide if you’ll benefit from a hip replacement or knee replacement operation.

Joint school

You will need to attend our joint school before your operation. It’s an educational session that will help you prepare for your surgery and learn more about what to expect. We will book your joint school session when we arrange your surgery date.

During the session you’ll meet other hip or knee replacement patients. You’re welcome to bring a relative or carer with you so that they can support you at home after your operation.

More information

The following content is supplied by the NHS website

After your operation

You should be able to go home 1 to 3 days after your operation. You will be encouraged to move around as soon as possible on the day of your operation to prevent DVT and maximise your recovery. We will encourage you to wash and dress almost straight after surgery and you will be encouraged to do this independently where possible.

Find out more about staying in hospital as an inpatient.

Going home

You will need to have an X-ray and a blood test before you go home.

A physiotherapist will make sure you can walk, climb stairs (where appropriate) and can do your exercises independently.

An occupational therapist will discuss your home circumstances with you to make sure you can manage and have enough support in place. They will give you any equipment you need.

Information about osteoarthritis

This content is supplied by the NHS website

Infant hip ultrasound screening

Your baby has been referred for an ultrasound scan of the hips.

What is it?

It is a safe and painless examination of your child’s hip joints using an ultrasound machine.

Why is it necessary?

This is either because signs suggestive of abnormality of the hip joint have been noticed or your baby has certain risk factors that can be associated with problems within the hip joint.

The signs of hip abnormality include clicking or clunking of the joint, unequal leg length, asymmetric thigh creases or reduced hip movement.

Factors that are associated with an increased risk of hip abnormality include breech births or caesarean section for transverse lie, lack of fluid in the womb causing moulding which may result in flattening of the head, tight neck or foot abnormalities, including positional talipes.  Other factors are twin births, other congenital abnormalities, low birth weight for gestational age and family history of developmental hip problems.

Early recognition of hip problems allows for effective treatment, preventing long-term disability.

What will happen?

The visit involves a physical examination and ultrasound scan.  You will remain with your child throughout the consultation which will take about 10 minutes.

You will be told the result immediately and a report sent your doctor.

How should I prepare?

If possible you should feed your baby before your appointment.  You may require spare nappies and a change of clothes.

It is important that you attend the appointment even if the physical signs or the risk factor condition has improved as there may still be an abnormality of the hip joint.

If you wish to change your appointment, please phone the orthopaedic outpatient booking office: 01736 758892.

If you have any queries, please phone the department: 01872 253430

Professional careers in trauma and orthopaedics

There are multiple ways to find out about careers in this area:

Page last reviewed: 18 October 2023

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