Joint replacements are ever more common as an effective way of alleviating pain from arthritis. They are also becoming far more frequent in people in their 40’s and 50’s.
Just as athletes train for marathons, it is possible to train our bodies to best prepare for surgery — a concept known as “prehabilitation,” or “prehab.” It is a fact that the fitter we are, the faster our recovery. A 2014 study in the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery concluded, “The use of preoperative physical therapy was associated with a 29% decrease in the use of any post-acute care services.” While our Prehab services won’t involve grueling routines, we can provide, in tandem with your surgeon’s protocol, excellent tools to help you prepare for your surgery.
This program is best started six weeks prior to your surgery date. We understand that you may have decreased mobility and pain, and our Prehab program is designed with that in mind — focusing on low-impact exercises, often preformed with you sitting or lying down.
The following will be our focus for your individualized program:
- Strengthen the muscles that will support that new joint.
- Flexibility and having the most range of motion will lend to decreased pain and improved gait during and after recovery.
- Endurance that you will gain with seated or lying down exercises will improve your tolerance to activity following the surgery. You will achieve your milestones more quickly.
The Prehab program will also address the home equipment assessment and make recommendations for what type of cane or walker that may best fit your needs. Our therapists can make recommendations as to the proper height of your seating surfaces, an often-overlooked factor, which will help immensely with those sit to stand transitions. We are also happy to coach family and caregivers on how to best assist your loved one when they return home. Your post-op recovery will likely be shortened, with less pain and anxiety and a speedier return to the activities you love!
Please give us a call if you have any questions.