Prehabilitation, Pre-Surgery Physical Therapy

Maximizing Surgical Success: The Power of Pre-Surgery Physical Therapy

Preparing for surgery can be a daunting experience, but did you know that physical therapy before your procedure can significantly impact your recovery? Pre-surgery physical therapy, often referred to as prehabilitation or prehab, involves engaging in targeted exercises and interventions to optimize your physical health before going under the knife. Physical therapy is crucial for anyone facing a surgical procedure.

The top 5 reasons to seek out pre-surgery physical therapy are:

  1. Enhanced surgical outcomes
  2. Reduced post-operative complications
  3. Fast recovery
  4. Improved surgical tolerance
  5. Psychological Preparation 

Enhanced Surgical Outcomes with Pre-Surgery Physical Therapy:

One of the primary goals of pre-surgery physical therapy is to enhance surgical outcomes. By engaging in a tailored exercise program designed to improve strength, flexibility, and mobility, patients can significantly contribute to their post-operative recovery. Exercises such as preoperative rehabilitation exercises and pre-surgical strengthening exercises target specific muscle groups and functional movements relevant to the upcoming surgery, setting the stage for a smoother recovery process.

Reduced Post-operative Complications:

Prehabilitation can also play a vital role in reducing the risk of post-operative complications. Pre-operative physical therapy protocols focus not only on improving physical fitness but also on optimizing overall health. By addressing factors such as cardiovascular fitness, respiratory function, and musculoskeletal health, pre-surgery physical therapy can help mitigate risks such as infections, blood clots, and post-operative pain, leading to a safer and more comfortable recovery period.

Faster Recovery:

For many individuals, the prospect of a quicker recovery is a significant motivating factor for undergoing pre-surgery physical therapy. By starting rehabilitation before the surgery, patients can build a foundation of strength and mobility that can expedite the recovery process. Preoperative mobility exercises and pre-surgical rehabilitation plans target areas of weakness or restriction, allowing patients to regain function more rapidly after the operation and return to their daily activities sooner.

Improved Surgical Tolerance due to Preoperative Physical Therapy:

Another compelling reason to prioritize pre-surgery physical therapy is its potential to improve surgical tolerance. By optimizing physical health and fitness levels before the procedure, patients may experience better tolerance to the stress of surgery. This can translate to shorter hospital stays, fewer complications, and a smoother recovery trajectory overall. Engaging in a prehabilitation program, including pre-operative physiotherapy interventions, can help patients prepare both physically and mentally for the surgical experience, empowering them to face the procedure with confidence and resilience.

Pre-Surgery Physical Therapy Improves Psychological Preparation for Surgery:

Beyond its physical benefits, pre-surgery physical therapy also offers valuable psychological preparation for the upcoming procedure. Prehabilitation provides patients with an opportunity to familiarize themselves with the rehabilitation process, reducing anxiety and fear associated with the surgery. By understanding and participating in pre-operative conditioning programs, individuals can approach their surgery with a sense of control and readiness, which can positively impact their overall experience and recovery journey.

Pre-surgery physical therapy is a powerful tool for optimizing surgical outcomes and enhancing the overall patient experience. By integrating targeted exercises and interventions before the procedure, individuals can improve their physical health, reduce the risk of complications, and expedite the recovery process. From enhanced surgical outcomes to psychological preparation, the benefits of prehabilitation are undeniable.

While most think of orthopedic cases when thinking of preoperative physical therapy, there has been proof of better outcomes for patients that undergo an elective cardiac surgery. Typically, the patients that go to physical therapy before their surgery require less time in the hospital, and the time of mechanical ventilation shows a difference as well, according to the journal article Effectiveness of Preoperative Chest Physiotherapy in Patients Undergoing Elective Cardiac Surgery, a Systematic Review & Meta-Analysis.

Whether you’re facing a major operation or a minor procedure, consider the transformative impact that pre-surgery physical therapy can have on your journey to wellness. Call Catalyst PT & Diagnostics at (727)286-8408 to schedule your FREE consultation to learn more about how we can help you prepare for your surgery!


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