What is prehab? Can it help?
Katelyn Sander

What is prehab? Can it help?

The Healthy View

Written by: Dr. Paul Glancey, Chiropractor, Adelaide Health Clinic & Sport Medicine Clinic

Undergoing major surgery is like running a marathon, both require training.

Have you heard of the term “prehab”? The easiest way to describe it, in the context of preparing for a major surgery, is when we take post-operative protocols that are specific to the surgery and apply them beforehand. This proactive approach further enables the patient (you) to be involved in their care and has been shown to reduce time in hospital and recovery times across many different types of surgery.

A structured and sustained exercise program leads to improvements not only in muscular strength and conditioning but in heart health, and respiratory function as well. When this exercise program is geared towards surgery preparation, lower post-operative complication rates and an earlier restoration to functional status have been seen. This pre-operative conditioning enables patients to withstand post-operative stresses more efficiently. The priority for most, if not all, patients after major surgery is to get back to ‘normal’ daily life by restoring function.

Rehabilitation after a surgery is a complex process involving more than just exercises. This process is often negatively affected by the stress imposed by the surgery itself. Prehab allows us to begin the rehabilitation process in an environment that is more conducive to learning and applying these concepts. Which puts the patient (you) in the best position possible to succeed.

An optimized prehab program addresses factors like smoking, excess alcohol intake, weight concerns, and poor nutrition which have all been shown to negatively impact recovery post-surgery. Making positive changes with respect to these factors prior to the surgery in combination with an appropriate exercise program while providing education and support to the patient will enhance post-surgery outcomes.

These programs are specific and tailored to the individual patient’s above lifestyle considerations and upcoming surgery. Connect with us to see how we can help you with your surgical recovery and put yourself in the best position to get back to normal life… Or better! Contact the Adelaide Health Clinic or Sport Medicine Clinic to set up your appointment today.

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