Understanding Pre-Surgical Therapy—Pre-Hab
For most people the concept of physical therapy is understood and appreciated—you know that after surgery you will need to do exercises to regain strength and mobility. A physical therapist will guide you through your exercises to help you get back on your feet as quickly as possible. But you may not be aware of the importance of physical therapy before surgery. Call our office to speak to a physical therapist about the benefits of pre-surgical therapy and learn how it can help with your recovery.
In recent years surgeons and physical therapists have begun to emphasize the importance of going through physical therapy before you go on the operating table. Studies have shown that beginning physical therapy around a month or so before you go through surgery can significantly speed up your recovery time. No one wants to go through surgery, but when you have no other choice at least you can take comfort knowing that pre-hab will help you recover more quickly than you would have with just post-surgical therapy.
What is the Purpose of Pre-Surgical Therapy?
Pre-surgical therapy has some specific goals that all physical therapists hope to achieve for their patients. These include:
- Help patients prepare both physically and mentally for surgery
- Limit the pain and inflammation that come after surgery
- Improve patterns of movement before the operation
- Improve range of motion
- Help patients gain more control of their musculature surrounding the injury
- Aid in developing physical fitness and general well-being
- Teach patients the exercises they will need to perform after the surgery
Surgery is always somewhat traumatic to the body, which is why it is only performed when there is no other option to achieve the desired result. There will be a loss of strength and function no matter how well you prepare beforehand. However, the loss can be significantly lessened by going through pre-hab.
The stronger you get before surgery, the stronger you can expect to be after you get out of surgery. Your need for physical therapy following surgery will be reduced as well—not completely eliminated, but you can expect to go through less physical therapy after surgery if you go through sufficient pre-hab beforehand.
The Importance of Physical Therapy—Both Before and After Surgery
As a surgical patient, it is important that you understand the realities of what surgery will do to your body. You cannot regain normal function following surgery if you do not go through physical therapy. That is why your physical therapist will develop a comprehensive plan to aid you in recovery. He or she will take stock of your current condition as well as the known issues that will result from your surgery. Then he or she will develop an exercise regimen specifically for your circumstances.
The nice thing about pre-hab is that you and your physical therapist get to start this process sooner. You can both establish a positive training routine, one that you can get accustomed to before surgery. Then, when you go start physical therapy after surgery, you will already be aware of how it works and what it will feel like. It will still be challenging. The more severe the surgery the more challenging you can expect it to be. But that challenge will be a little bit easier to overcome because you have already begun training.
Helping You Recover Quickly from Surgery
Our physical therapy team is passionate about helping surgical patients get their lives back as quickly as possible. We all understand the difficulties that surgery can present. We want you to know that we are here to help.
Are you considering surgery in the near future? Or, have you already scheduled a surgery? Please give us a call to speak to one of our team members about your options for physical therapy both before and after surgery. Take advantage of our expertise and the time you have available to start down the road to recovery now. There is no need to wait. Please contact us at Oviedo and Orlando, FL centers, now to learn more!