It has been some time since my last entry. After being exposed to many post operative joint replacements, there are a few tips that have become quite evident. If you are awaiting a lower extremity joint replacement there are many things you can do to facilitate your recovery. It is often overlooked that arm strength makes mobilization much easier post surgery. We use our arms to help ourselves out of chairs, or out of bed, and particularly when we have to reduce the weight we put on one of our legs, our arms become an invaluable tool of ambulation.
General core strength is very important as well to speed up your recovery and ability to be up and moving sooner. Balance exercises are also crucial to reduce your risk of falls and therefore damage to your newly replaced joint. Remember to keep up on your aerobic activities, modify what you do to avoid pain, for example swimming is an excellent option with decreased impact, stationary bicycles are also a low impact option that get your cardiovascular system going.
Make a plan for discharge, such as having home support, be it family or friends, making your home easier to move around while you are recovering.
There are many tools available to empower you through the process, you can check with your local physiotherapist, or occupational therapist and they will be able to guide you in the right direction. OASIS, through Vancouver Coastal health is a wonderful resource, visit them at: http://oasis.vch.ca/surgery/