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Pre and Post Operation Care: Why is is Important

Recovering from a surgery can cause both mental and physical distress on a patient. Common physical complications after surgery include pain, limited range of motion, and mobility issues. Physical therapy is an effective way for patients to regain their strength and mobility after a surgical procedure.

But did you know that physical therapy can be beneficial before surgery, too? It can help prepare your body for the procedure, enhance the recovery process, and get your full strength back as quickly as possible.

Benefits of Pre and Post Op Physical Therapy

For many patients, physical therapy administered before or after a major surgery has multiple benefits. These include:

  • Mentally preparing patients for surgical procedures
  • Improving surgical outcomes
  • Lowering the risk of post-op infections
  • Helping patients regain strength more quickly
  • Reducing the length of hospital stays

Preparing for Surgery With Physical Therapy

As you age, your joints begin to wear away, making total hip and knee replacements some of the most common elective surgeries we see today. Preoperative physical therapy, also known as prehabilitation, or prehab, can stabilize your pain levels before surgery and get you back on your feet faster.

Shoulder surgeries are other common procedures. Prehab exercises can help the shoulder stay supple, strong, and flexible, all while preventing more damage to the area. Pre-op exercises and activities can also restore shoulder mobility.

Before your procedure, an AmeriCare physical therapist will work with you to improve strength and functionality in the areas surrounding the targeted injury site.

We can prescribe various exercises and stretches for you to perform at home so that your operation can go as smoothly as possible, improving the outcome of your surgery.

Common Types of Physical Therapy After Surgery

At AmeriCare, our physical therapists are trained to optimize your recovery and prevent re-injury during the rehabilitation process.This type of treatment can help patients who have had orthopedic surgeries, such as operations on the hip, knee, and shoulder.

Other areas of focus include the ankle, foot, wrist, hand, neck, and spine. The goals of physical therapy after surgery mainly focus on alleviating pain, returning strength to pre-injury levels, and reducing the recovery period.

The team at AmeriCare Physical Therapy is composed of experienced physical therapists who are qualified in administering a wide range of orthopedic therapies following surgical procedures, including joint replacements..

Stretching

After a major surgery, you might deal with numerous physical issues, including pain, muscle spasms, muscle shortening from inactivity, and swelling. Any of these issues can cause you to lose range of motion in the affected area. We offer stretching sessions to help restore range of motion, through a combination of passive range of motion and active range of motion.

Exercises and Training

After joint replacement surgeries, physical therapy can help you become accustomed to the prosthetic joint. Swelling or pain can make it difficult to move your knee or hip. At AmeriCare, we can create a personalized exercise plan to help you improve strength and build muscle after your procedure.

The types of exercises we can help with include:

  • Strengthening exercises: At AmeriCare, we’ll focus on improving your range of motion around the new joint. Your physical therapist will work with you to perform safe and

effective exercises to restore your range of motion. With time, the new hip or knee can feel like a normal joint, allowing you to perform your daily activities.

  • Body awareness and balance training: These specialized training exercises can help you improve your body awareness, balance, and coordination. After regaining the ability to place your entire weight on your knee or hip, your physical therapist may add agility exercises to your routine. These exercises focus on practicing stops and starts, turns, and changes in direction.
  • Functional training: Once you’re able to walk freely without pain, your physical therapist may encourage functional training to help you perform activities in everyday life more easily. This training involves compound movements, which means you bend at multiple joints and use several muscle groups to achieve the movement. Functional training activities might include crossing a busy street or getting off of an escalator.

Manual Therapy Techniques

At AmeriCare Physical Therapy, we offer manual therapy techniques to relieve pain and swelling following surgery. Techniques include:

  • Joint mobilizations
  • Scar tissue massage
  • Soft tissue mobilization
  • Therapist-assisted manual stretching
  • Myofascial release

Pre and Post Op Care at AmeriCare Physical Therapy

Whether you’re preparing for surgery or recovering from a procedure, pre and post rehabilitation can help you to experience the best recovery possible.

From minor surgeries to total joint replacements, the team at AmeriCare can help you relieve pain, promote healing, and dramatically reduce recovery time.

 Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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