In a perfect world, every surgery would move forward as scheduled, but we don’t live in a perfect world. Surgeries get delayed all the time, and that can throw a wrench in your recovery plans. If your surgery gets delayed, you shouldn’t just wait around doing nothing until your new surgery date arrives. One of the best things you can do following a surgical delay is to jump into a physical therapy routine. Below, we explain why you should consider a PT program if your surgery gets pushed back.
How PT Can Help Following A Delayed Surgery
Surgeries can get delayed for a number of reasons, and we’ve seen that firsthand amid the COVID-19 pandemic. But even when we’re not dealing with a contagious virus, operations can get pushed back if a patient doesn’t hit a target weight, has problems with other comorbidities like blood sugar levels or blood pressure, or if the surgeon has to reschedule because they were called into emergency surgery.
Regardless of your underlying reason for your delayed operation, it’s helpful if you use this delay to your advantage, and one of the best ways to do that is by jumping into a physical therapy routine. Here’s a look at some of the benefits of a physical therapy routine following a delayed surgery.
- Functions As Prehab – As we’ve talked about on the blog in the past, prehabilitation is very helpful for a number of reasons prior to surgery. It helps strengthen muscles and soft tissues and it works to maintain flexibility in a specific area, all of which you’ll be doing once your operation is complete. If you start before your operation, you’ll be stronger and better positioned to thrive during post-op rehab. Use this extra dive to dive into a prehab PT routine.
- Become A Healthier Version Of Yourself – Regardless of whether or not your surgery was delayed because you had to get some vital measures into a healthier range, use this added time before your operation to become a healthier version of yourself, and physical therapy can help do that. By jumping into a routine that gets you moving and exercising, you can improve your cardiovascular health, lose some extra weight and help push your blood sugar or blood pressure readings towards a more stable range.
- Meet Your Therapy Team – You’re going to jump right into your PT routine following your surgery, and sometimes it takes a session or two to warm up to your therapy team and really get the most out of your sessions. If you begin a physical therapy routine while you’re waiting for your new surgery date, you’ll be familiar with your care team by the time you undergo your operation, meaning you won’t have to waste time getting used to everything PT entails after your operation.
- Understanding Self-Care – A physical therapist also taks with patients about some home-based exercises and self-care routines that can help you improve function or avoid a setback prior to or following your operation. Again, learning these practices ahead of time means you aren’t trying to figure out new routines while you’re recovering from the operation. You’ll develop some healthy self-care routines if you work with a physical therapy team prior to your operation.
- Healthy Mindset – Finally, a physical therapist can also help with your mental mindset leading up to your new surgery date. A delayed operation can cause some negative emotions and feelings, and it’s important that you don’t let these derail your progress. Your physical therapist will talk about some of the emotions you may be experiencing and healthy ways to channel any frustrations you’re experiencing so that the delay doesn’t cause mental or physical setbacks.
To sync up with a professional PT team who can help you work through the challenges of a delayed surgery, reach out to the team at OrthoRehab Specialists today.