As the world took time out on Friday, 18 July to honour Nelson Mandela’s legacy of service on Mandela Day, Brand South Africa focuses on the power of the individual to effect change, and build a cooperative, cohesive society.This month, as South Africa and countries around the world celebrated Mandela Day, there is a greater poignancy as we reflect on the great man’s legacy now that he is no longer with us in person, just in spirit. As we remember his life, his leadership, the sacrifices he made to achieve our freedom and a better future as citizens of this country, and his passion for furthering humanitarian causes, we are encouraged to follow his example and make a difference in the world. As Nelson Mandela said: “What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is the difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead”.He had a vision of social justice and freedom for all, and he made great strides in working to fulfil that vision – today, it is his living legacy to us all and it requires us, as engaged citizens, to play our part in serving our communities and our country and making them better places in which to live and thrive.This year, Mandela Day encouraged us all to become ‘Mandela Changemakers’, citizens of the world who each day do something proactive that can effect positive change that will benefit everyone and the world we live in.Changemakers play their part by giving their personal time to make a change that’s close to their heart or by giving a little of their time to make a difference to the life of someone else. There are so many ways to make a difference and become a Mandela Changemaker; perhaps starting with what you are passionate about and where you know your actions will have a lasting impact.The power of the individualThe concept of recognising the power of the individual to play his/her part, to be the change, and genuinely make a difference to society through voluntary actions and contributions is a continuation of the powerful “Play your Part” campaign promoted by Brand South Africa. The key message behind “Play your Part” is that as caring and responsible citizens, we all need to be more accountable and to play proactive and contributable roles in the development of South Africa as a caring society. The underlying premise of this important campaign is that we all recognise to make positive change happen in the country on the scale that is needed, its starts with the individual, and that individual positive actions, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, can make the ultimate difference in the societies and communities in which we all live and work. If every individual looks to his/her own conscience and takes accountability for the contributions he/she makes outside of their own family and work lives to their communities and to society as a whole, then real positive change for good can happen.Food, shelter and education for allThis Mandela Day, citizens were asked to play their part and focus on the realisation or restoration of dignity and empowerment through their individual contributions to society.There are a number of key focus areas where citizens can make a difference through their positive actions. The first looks at how we can all help to address one of the biggest challenges here in South Africa and indeed around the world; ensuring food security. All people, at all times, should have access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to maintain a healthy and active life. This is a crucial social support measure for effective development and growth. We can all play our part in working to achieve food security in the country for those who are most vulnerable by getting involved in community feeding activities, preparing food parcels for the disadvantaged, and working to establish community food gardens so that residents can have the opportunity to work at feeding themselves through their own efforts.Another key challenge that requires us all to play our part is in the field of education and literacy. In a world where knowledge truly is power, education and literacy are the basic building blocks that unlock the gates of opportunity and success for our citizens. As individuals, we can get involved in the drive for literacy, helping our children, our young people, and our adult learners in their reading and learning activities to help them reach their goals. By getting involved and playing our part, we can be part of the solution and help by giving every citizen the chance to fulfil his/her potential and dreams.The challenge of providing adequate shelter and infrastructure for all the country’s citizens is another that requires us all to play our part if we are to see a day when everyone can proudly say they have a place to call home. To achieve this vision, all South Africa’s citizens need to play their part, join together and look to see how their individual skills, talent and resources can be used to build the much needed shelter and infrastructure that will give hope to families and communities around the country.A life lived in serviceFinally, we can all play our part in living Mandela’s legacy by committing ourselves to a life and philosophy of service and volunteerism, giving our time and energy in some small way each day that can make a difference to the lives of others. Volunteerism is a powerful means of encouraging and providing a tangible mechanism for the country’s citizens to engage in activities that tackle developmental, societal and community challenges. It is not prohibitive, it is not exclusive, it recognises that everyone has something they can contribute, whether their time, skills or knowledge through volunteer action, and their combined efforts can be a significant force for achieving peace, development and sustainability. There is no doubt that the practical act of volunteering makes important economic and social contributions to all spheres of society. It not only provides direct support to individual community projects, national development initiatives and environmental programmes, but also has the power to contribute to the building of a more cohesive society by building trust and acknowledging the power of giving back amongst citizens.The Play Your Part campaign empowers every individual in the country to get involved, take a stand and make positive change happen in the communities in which we live and work. If we all take a little time out of our busy daily lives and work schedules to acknowledge the significant challenges that need to be addressed in the country, and take a positive decision to do something about finding solutions to those challenges, then we can all be part of the positive change that needs to happen in our country and act as role models for the rest of the world to follow. We can also become Mandela’s Changemakers and ensure that his legacy is fulfilled and the world becomes a better place as a result of his vision and our action in making it a reality.Although Mandela Day has passed, we are all called on to make everyday a Mandela Day.
Alternate NamesTotal elbow arthroplasty – discharge; Endoprosthetic elbow replacement – dischargeWhen You Were in the HospitalYou had surgery to replace your elbow joint with artificial joint parts (prosthetics).Thesurgeon made an incision (cut) in the back of your upper or lower arm and removeddamaged tissue and parts of the bones. The surgeon then put in theartificial joint in place and closed with sutures (stitches).You were given pain medicine and learned how to manage swelling around your newjoint.What to Expect at HomeYour elbow area may feel warm and tender for 2-4 weeks after surgery.For the first week after surgery, you may have a soft splint on your arm to hold your elbow in place. Some people need to use a harder splint or brace that has a hinge when theincision has healedYou will need help with every choressuch as shopping, bathing, making meals, and houseworkfor up to 6 weeks. You may want to make some changes around your homeso it is easier for you to take care of yourself.You will need to wait4-6 weeks before you can drive. Your doctor or physical therapist will tell you when it is okay.You may be able to start using your elbow as soon as 12 weeks after surgery. Full recovery can take up to a year.Activity The amount you can use your arm and when you can start using it will depend on the condition of your elbow. Be sure to ask your doctor what limits you may have.advertisementYour doctor will have you go tophysical therapy to help you gain strength and use of your arm. If you have a splint, you may need to wait a few weeks to start therapy.Ask your doctor if you can begin to increase your movement in your elbow by gently opening and closing your elbow joint. (If you have pain or problems with your incision when you do this exercise, you may be doingit exercise too much.)You can reduce soreness after exercise by putting ice on the joint.After the first week, you may be able to use your splint only while sleeping.Ask your doctor if this okay. You will need to avoid carrying anything or pulling items even when your splint is off.By 6 weeks, you should be able to slowly increasedaily activities to help make your elbow and arm stronger.Do not lift anything heavier than 1-2 pounds when you do your exercises. Ask your doctor or physical therapist how much you can lift.You may also need to do shoulder and spine range-of-motion exercises.By 12 weeks, you should be able to lift more weight. Ask your doctor what other activities you can do at this point.Make sure you know the proper way to use your elbow before you start any activity or move your arm for any reason. Ask your doctor if you can:Lift things heavier than 10 to 15 lbs for the rest of your lifePlay golf or tennis, or throw objects (such as a ball) for the rest of your lifeDo any activities that make you lift your elbow over and over, such as shoveling or shooting basketballsDo jamming or pounding activities, such as hammeringDo impact sports, such as boxing or footballDo physical activities that need quick stop and start motions or twisting with your elbowPush heavy objectsWound CareThe stitches on your wound will be removed about 1 week after surgery. Keep your incision and the dressing clean and dryfor 2 weeks. You may change the dressing every day if you like.Do NOT shower until after your follow-up appointment with your doctor. Your doctor will tell you when you can begin taking showers. When you do start showering again, let the water run over the incision, but do not let the water beat down on it. Do NOT scrub. Wash your incision gently and pat it dry.Do NOT soak the wound in a bathtub, hot tub, or swimming pool.PainPain is normal after elbow replacement surgery. It shouldget betterover time.Your doctor will give you a prescription for pain medicine. Get it filled when you go home so that you have it when you need it. Take your pain medicine when you start having pain so pain doesnt get too bad.Ibuprofen or another anti-inflammatory medicine may also help. Ask your doctor what other medicines are safe to take with your pain medicine.Do NOT drive if you are taking narcotic pain medicine. This medicine may make you too sleepy to drive safely.advertisementWhen to Call the DoctorCall your doctor or nurse if:Blood is soaking through your dressing and the bleeding does not stop when you put pressure on the areaPain does not go away after you take pain medicineYou have swelling or pain in your armYour hand or fingers look darker than normal or are cool to the touchYou have redness, pain, swelling, or yellowish discharge from your incisionYou have a temperature higher than 101 F.Your new elbow joint feels loose, like it is moving aroundReferencesSurgical options for the arthritic elbow. Gallo RA, Payatakes A, Sotereanos DG. J Hand Surg [Am]. 2008 May-Jun;33(5):746-59. Review. PMID: 18590859Throckmorton TW. Shoulder and elbow arthroplsty. In: Canale ST, Beatty JH, eds. Campbells Operative Orthopaedics. 12th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2012:chap 12.Review Date:11/15/2012Reviewed By:C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Assistant Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Dept of Orthopaedic Surgery. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.