SportsMed Orthopaedic Group, Inc.
SportsMed Orthopaedic Group, Inc.
SportsMed Orthopaedic Group, Inc.
Welcome to SportsMed Orthopaedic Group, Inc.
General Office Visits Surgery Before Surgery After Surgery General

How do I make an appointment?

Dr. Wolf and his fellow sees patients at 3000 California Street in San Francisco. The staff will assist you in scheduling an appointment for the next available opening. Please call (415) 563-2600 during regular business hours. Dr. Wolf's practice is limited to the treatment of shoulder and knee problems in order to give you the most specialized care and cutting-edge technology. Other physicians (orthopaedic surgeons) in his office are available to care for the full spectrum of orthopedic issues if needed. Dr. Wolf does his best to minimize the time you need to wait before getting an appointment. Most urgent patients can be accommodated by Dr. Wolf or his staff the same week if medically necessary. Please call directly and alert the staff if your problem is urgent. Read the "Appointment Information" section for further details about your visit.

3000 California Street, San Francisco
(415) 563-2600

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Where are your offices?

Dr. Wolf sees patients at his San Francisco office at 3000 California Street on the third floor. The office directions are all in the "About Us" section of the website.

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Where does Dr. Wolf operate?

Dr. Wolf operates at California Pacific Hospital (California & Pacific campuses), St. Mary's Medical Center, California Pacific Medical Center, Marin General Hospital, Pacific Heights Surgery Center, Marin Specialty Surgery Center. The locations, directions, and phone numbers are all in the "About Us" section of the website.

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What should I know about my medication (risks, adverse effects, etc.)?

Medscape

Many medications have side effects. It is important that you make yourself aware of the possible risks of your medications so that you can inform your physician if any adverse effects occur. Medscape "drug info" is an excellent Web site that will provide you with most of the pertinent information regarding any of your medications. Please click on the link provided above and type in your medication name to read the information. In general, your primary care physician is the best person to monitor your general health and prescribe all of your long-term medications. This will enable your primary physician to make any changes as dictated by your health or potential medication interactions.

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How do I get a refill on my prescription?

Routine medication refills will only be given during business hours, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Refills after hours and on weekends are done only for emergencies. This policy is designed to prevent medical errors and to allow for proper documentation of prescriptions. Remember to have the medication name and pharmacy number available before you call.

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Office Visits

What should I bring to the office for my appointment?

Please read the "Appointment Information" section of the website before your visit. This will answer many questions for you and help avoid any problems with your insurance. In general your appointment will be facilitated by having an organized file of your medical history, medications, previous studies such as X-ray, MRI, or CT with reports, and copies of any previous operative reports which relate to your current problem. You can ask any previous surgeon to fax your chart information and operative notes to our office if you do not have them available. Also remember to bring your insurance information so that our staff can assist you with your claim forms as needed.

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Should I fill out any forms before my visit?

Below are several forms which will help us to best care for you and promptly treat your problem. For new patients, please fill out the Demographics Form, Health History Form, and the Injury Form related to your presented complaint. They should be printed and brought with you for your appointment. Established patients with a new complaint only need to fill out the appropriate Injury Form.

Downloadable Patient Forms 

Patient Registration Form
Patient Questionnaire
Notice of Privacy Practices

Workers' Compensation Downloadable Forms

Patient Registration Form
Patient Questionnaire
History Of Present Illness or Injury



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Who do I contact regarding billing questions?

For billing questions and concerns, please call Ruth Cox at Superior Medical Billing 1-800-217-2326.

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Surgery

When is surgery appropriate for my condition?

Typically, most problems can be treated without surgery. A variety of treatments may be appropriate including rest, change in activities, medication, injections, or physical therapy. Non-operative treatment may not be successful or indicated in every case. In general, surgery should be performed when 1) you have an injury that will cause significant limitations or permanent functional loss without surgical correction, 2) your pain or disability from a condition has not responded to appropriate non-surgical treatments and living with that condition is intolerable or not compatible with your desired life-style, or 3) you have an injury or condition that will likely probably lead to more significant problems in the future if not treated surgically now. Please make certain that you are evaluated by a physician who can determine the severity of your condition.

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What are the risks of surgery?

Any surgery involves risk. Most of these risks are known, so iIt is important for you and your physician to weigh the risks and benefits of surgery together before proceeding. TypicalComplications issues that can arise from surgery include infection, nerve damage, damage to blood vessels, blood clots, recurrence of the problem, exacerbation or onset of other medical problems, broken failure or loosening of implants, and complications of related to anesthesia. Most of tThese risks are typically minimal and vary depending on your specific surgery. Please discuss your concerns with your physician surgeon prior to surgery. Because your physician surgeon is aware of these potential complications, he can attempt to prevent you from having any problems during or following surgery. If anything does occur, it is important that you alert Dr. Wolf immediately so that he can remedy the situation and work with you to avoid any long-term problems.

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What are joint replacements made from?

Joint replacements are typically made from metal alloys (cobalt-chrome or titanium). Some prosthesies have ceramic components and others may involve a polyethylene (plastic) liner or insert. Below are some links to shoulder, hip, and knee manufacturers so that you can learn more about their products. Please close these windows to return to "kneeandshoulder.com".

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Will my joint replacement be detected at the airport?

A minority of the metal components may trigger airport security devices. For this reason, you will receive a card with your implant information to show to the security personnel.

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When do I need to take antibiotics after joint replacement?

In general, antibiotics should be taken when you have any invasive procedures or significant dental work. This link to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons will give you the national recommendations (AAOS link). Please close the AAOS window to return to "kneeandshoulder.com".

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What are the screws or anchors used in surgery made from?

The implants typically used in arthroscopic surgery may be made from metal or an absorbable material that may disappear be reabsorbed in months to years and be filled in with tissue from your own bodyafter their purpose has been fulfilled. Below are some links to implant manufacturers so that you can learn more about their products. Please close these windows to return to "kneeandshoulder.com".

Linvatec
Mitek

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Before Surgery

What should I do to get ready for surgery?

Preoperative Guidelines for Outpatient Surgery
Preoperative Guidelines for Inpatient Surgery

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Do I need to see my medical doctor before surgery?

Typically any patient over 50 years old, anyone with significant medical problems, or anyone taking multiple medications should see their primary care physician for a preoperative clearance. Our staff can assist you in the timing of this and will send a letter to your physician informing him or her of the date and planned procedure.

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After Surgery

When should I be seen again after surgery?

For outpatient or arthroscopic surgery, you should be seen back in 75-10 days. For inpatient surgery, such as joint replacements, you should be seen back at 2 weeks from the date of surgery. Subsequently, patients are typically seen again at 3 weeks, 4-6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, and 1 year or until they have completely recovered. Some patients may require closer monitoring and other will need less follow up depending on their type of surgery. Joint replacement patients should be seen on an annual basis for follow-up X-rays.

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What should I expect at my first postoperative visit?

At your first visit you will have your sutures or staples removed and the incisions checked for healing. Dr. Wolf or his fellowWe will also review the surgical findings and post-operative treatment plan again with you at this time. See the "Rehabilitation" sections under the main "Shoulder", "Hip", and "Knee" headings to review the typical postoperative protocols. Your exact treatment plan may vary depending on the operative findings.

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When can I take off my dressing?

Arthroscopic surgery: Dressings can be removed on in 48 hoursthe afternoon following your surgery. Afterwards At this point you canput band-aids over your small incisions. Open surgical procedures: If you have aTotal joint arthroplasty and some other open procedures require longer incisions, . you only need to cover it if there is drainageThese should be covered with a sterile dry dressing until the skin sutures or staples are removed. You may shower on the fifth operative day and recover the wound with sterile 4 x 4 dressings. dressings can be removed after 48 hours. The incisions should be then covered with a sterile dry dressing until your first visit. Do not put any lotions, salves, or ointments on your incisions for the first month.

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How should I care for my incision?

A clean dressing should be placed over your incision until it is dry. Band-aids are good for arthroscopic portal sites. It is normal for clear or red-tinged fluid to drain from arthroscopy sites for several days because of the fluid that was used for the procedure. Longer incisions from open procedures should be covered with a sterile dry dressing which is changed daily until your first follow up. Do not put any lotions, salves, or ointments on your incisions for the first month.

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What should I look for in my incision?

If you experience increasing redness and pain around your wound or persistent drainage that looks infectedlike pus, you should notify your physician surgeon at once to be seen.

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When can I shower?

You can get your incisions wet the second day after arthroscopic surgery and fifth day after open procedures. Make certain that you have a safe and stable environment to shower so that you do not slip. If you have had more extensive surgery it may be helpful to obtain a shower chair. Sometimes an inexpensive attachment to make your shower head "hand-held" is beneficial. Do not immerse incisions for at least two weeks and only when all drainage has stopped.

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What should I know about my postoperative medication?

Medscape

This link will provide you all the information on medications which have been prescribed for you. Close the Medscape window to return to Memphisortho.com. Any narcotic pain medication can make you nauseous, lightheaded, or constipated. Stop your medication and notify your doctor if symptoms become significant. An over the counter laxative may be beneficial and should be taken as directed. You should gradually start to wean yourself from the pain medication as your pain resolves. This can be facilitated by alternating with an over the counter anti-inflammatory or pain medication such as Ibuprofen. Sleeping may be the most bothersome component to your recovery, so taking a pain pill at bedtime may allow you a more restful night's sleep. Narcotic medication may have a paradoxical effect in some people and cause sleeplessness.

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How long should I wear the sling or immobilizer?

If you have had a rotator cuff repair, SLAP labral repair, or shoulder stabilization for instability you should keep your immobilizer on except for showering. When showering, keep your operative arm at your side. After your first postoperative visit, you will be allowed to remove the immobilizer while relaxing around the house as long as you keep the arm at your side. If you have had a rotator cuff repair or shoulder stabilization you should flex and extend your wrist and elbow intermittently throughout the day so that they do not become stiff. If you have had a decompression or debridement without repair, you can remove the sling as comfort permits. You may find that wearing the sling for the first week or two when you are in public places prevents others from bumping your arm or shoulder and makes you more comfortable.

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How long should I use crutches, cane, or walker?

If you have had arthroscopy for debridement (cleaning up) of the cartilage or meniscus you can put full weight on your leg the day of surgery. Crutches can be used for a few days for comfort and discarded as desired. For a meniscus repair or ligament reconstruction, use your crutches until your first postoperative visit. This will give you added support and protection. You can also put full weight on your leg as comfort permits unless instructed otherwise. With joint replacement surgery, a walker, crutches, or cane will be used as needed for the first few weeks or months.

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How long should I use ice or the ice machine?

The ice machine or bag of ice is most useful in the first 2-3 days. You should intermittently apply the cold therapy for 2-3 hours and then allow an hour break. After the first 3 days, use ice as you desire. Many people find it beneficial and say that it relieves their discomfort. Avoid applying heat for the first month after surgery.

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When can I drive?

Return to driving depends upon the type of surgery you have. Each individual also will have different comfort levels. Your safety is most important. Your reaction times will be impaired for at least several weeks. Your return after knee surgery will be quicker if you do not use the operative leg to drive. Otherwise, you should have good strength, flexibility, and comfort before returning to the road. If you are in a shoulder immobilizer, you can use the arm to stabilize the wheel, but not to turn. You also will not be able to use a stick if your arm is immobilized. After a joint replacement it may be several months before you can comfortably and safely drive a car. These guidelines relate to the safety from a surgical standpoint. You should check local laws with regards to liability.

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When should I use heat or go in a hot tub?

Avoid heat for the first month and do not submerge your operative arm or leg in a hot tub or pool for the first 4 weeks.

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When can I swim?

Swimming is excellent exercise. In general it is best to wait 4 weeks before returning to the pool to allow your tissues to heal and prevent infection. After shoulder surgery you will be restricted longer if you have had a rotator cuff repair, labral repair, or shoulder stabilization.

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How do I get a refill on my prescription?

Routine medication refills will only be given during business hours, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Refills after hours and on weekends are done only for emergencies. This policy is designed to prevent medical errors and to allow for proper documentation of prescriptions. Remember to have the medication name and pharmacy number available before you call.

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What kind of physical therapy should I do?

Postoperative protocols are listed under the "Protocols" and "Rehabilitation" sections of the "Shoulder", "Hip", and "Knee" pages. Most patients will fall into these specific protocols. At the first postoperative visit, Dr. Wolf will let you know if you need to delay any of the exercises or stay immobile longer to allow further healing. The most important aspect of your recovery and therapy depends on your involvement and participation in a home exercise program. A printout of these exercises may be given to you in the office.

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Will I need formal physical therapy?

If your schedule does not permit you to see a physical therapist on a regular basis, then the guided programs in the "Shoulder", "Hip", and "Knee" rehabilitation sections will allow you to regain strength and flexibility on your own through daily exercises. Please review the specific rehabilitation section for your procedure. An initial visit with a therapist may facilitate your understanding of these exercises.

If you have worked with a therapist that you like, Dr. Wolf is more than happy towill provide you with a prescription to allow help you to continue working with that person. Dr. Wolf will communicate with your therapist aboutbe then apprised of your progress and expected goals so that your recovery time is optimized. A good therapist can be beneficial after certain surgeries and in the time period leading up to your operation. The most important aspect of your recovery and therapy still depends on your participation in a home exercise program.

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When can I return to my sports and activities?

Return to activity is customized to each patient and differs with the sport and desired activity. Some generalities for the different procedures are listed in the "Protocols" sections under "Shoulder", "Hip", and "Knee".

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