Pre & Post Surgical Rehab Covington & Mandeville, LA

Pre & Post Surgical Rehab

PRE-SURGICAL REHABILITATION

Why am I hearing so much about “prehab”?

Pre-surgical rehabilitation, or “prehab,” is increasingly popular in the surgical and physical therapy communities. Just as “rehab” generally refers to work that patients do to recover after surgery or intense medical treatment, “prehab” is designed to be undertaken prior to that procedure.

What does pre-surgical rehabilitation accomplish?

To put it succinctly, prehab shortens rehab. For patients who have pre-planned joint replacements or other reparative operations, pre-surgical rehabilitation helps reduce the time and challenges of post-surgery rehabilitation.

After surgery, patients must re-learn how to move again. Much of that need comes from the lack of muscle mass and flexibility that their existing condition caused. In addition, the surgery itself often involves some pain and stiffness in the following days and weeks.

Pre-surgical rehabilitation is designed to help you regain some of your lost strength and flexibility before you even have the surgery, as well as build up your ability to heal more quickly after your operation. When done correctly, prehab can dramatically decrease the time and pain associated with post-surgical recovery.

What happens in “prehab”?

Assuming you have enough planning time, your pre-surgical rehabilitation sessions would start about six weeks before your operation, depending on what your doctor advises. We’ll also help you evaluate your goals and your concerns. (Many patients worry about climbing stairs after surgery, for example, or even that first walk to the hospital bathroom.)

During your sessions, you’ll be working on building your overall strength and endurance, so your body bounces back from the surgical trauma. In addition, your physical therapist will help structure a plan that meets the challenges of your particular surgery, such as building upper body strength if you’re going to be getting around on crutches.

What can I expect from pre-surgical rehabilitation?

Studies show that patients who participate in pre-surgical rehabilitation experience these specific benefits:
Increased stamina and confidence. Not only will you have more aerobic endurance and muscle strength to take on postoperative routines, but you’ll have the confidence in having already built up the strategies for doing so.

Increased mobility. Prehab gives you the physical flexibility you’ll need to work through post-surgical stiffness. Our physical therapists also coach you on techniques for maintaining your balance, and compensating for limbs you can’t fully use while you are recovering.

With pre-surgical rehabilitation, our highly trained team will put together the right program to ensure that your post-surgical rehabilitation is as brief and painless as possible. Call us for a consultation, or make an appointment online.

 

POST-SURGICAL REHABILITATION

As your surgery nears, getting through the operation itself is probably all that’s on your mind. But once you’ve successfully cleared that hurdle, you may find that the real work is about to begin. No matter how much of a miracle worker your surgeon is, that skillful work can be undone without proper post-surgical rehabilitation.

The two main areas of concern for anyone after an operation are loss of strength and loss of mobility. Our physical therapists work on these muscle and joint issues so that not only are the specific areas on which you were operated on given plenty of attention — but your overall endurance and flexibility will also be improved. This comprehensive approach to physical therapy after an operation allows you to bounce back more quickly.

Which operations should be followed with physical therapy?

Of course, not every post-surgical period can be improved upon with physical therapy. But in many cases, this type of rehab speeds up the recovery process. Here are a few operations for which physical therapy is usually recommended as a follow up:

  • Rotator cuff tear repair
  • Hip, shoulder and knee joint replacements
  • Ligament tears of the knee (ACL, LCL, MCL, and PCL)
  • Arthroscopy and meniscus repair
  • Spinal surgery
  • Additional operations resulting in weakness or stiffness

How does post-surgical rehab speed recovery?

Operations such as joint replacements and spinal surgeries can result in mild to extreme discomfort. Our dedicated team can help reduce this pain in a number of ways, from applying ice, gentle massage or low-pulse electrical devices, to gently manipulating your muscles to ease tension.

Once your pain is under control, physical therapy can begin to address the challenges of your specific surgery. If you had knee replacement or ligament repair work, for example, moves that strengthen your knees will be part of your recovery.

Of course, being laid up can affect your body in ways that extend beyond the area of surgery. You might lose muscle mass, or even develop breathing problems, in some instances. Your physical therapist will work with you to rebuild your strength and endurance, while also working the specific surgical areas.

Ready for a Consultation?

Whether you’re planning ahead or don’t know until after your surgery that you’ll need additional help getting back on your feet, call our office as soon as possible. We’ll help evaluate your post-surgical rehabilitation areas of focus, and talk you through when you can expect to be back to your normal routine!

 

Sources

http://www.news-medical.net/news/20150903/Appropriate-pre-surgical-physical-therapy-can-help-joint-replacement-patients-recover-faster.aspx
http://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/treatments/joint-surgery/preparing/prehab-surgery.php
www.cartilage.org/patient/about-cartilage/cartilage-repair/what-is-postoperative-rehabilitation/
http://www.spine-health.com/wellness/exercise/rehabilitation-and-exercise-following-spine-surgery
http://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/knee-replacement/basics/what-you-can-expect/prc-20019202