If you've never ever run before, I would suggest starting with a Couch to 5K program. a C25K program assumes no prior running experience and will literally take you from your couch to a 5k road race.
This article will help get you started. www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness_artic
Also, if you are going to run, don't wear any old shoe. If you have had prior surgeries, then you need to make sure you're wearing properly fitted shoes. Wearing the wrong shoe can cause a bunch of problems including shin splints as well as problems for your feet, ankles, knees and hip joints. Running is very hard on a person's body regardless of age. Thus the importance of starting slowly along with getting fitted for a proper pair of running shoes.
Go to your nearest reputable running store. If you don't have a running store, a reputable sports store. Don't go to the places where the teenagers buy their Jordans. Those aren't sports stores. You want a place that will put you on a treadmill and watch you run in various types of shoes.
You can learn more about that here. www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness_artic
And well, because running is high impact, you might want to check with your doctor to make sure it's okay to run.