What is Prehabilitation?
Prehabilitation also known as preoperative rehabilitation is the practice of enhancing a patient’s functional capacity before surgery.
What is the purpose of prehabilitation?
The aim of prehabilitation is to improve postoperative outcomes. There have been multiple published studies which have shown patients who undertake a prehabilitation plan experience less postoperative pain and complications and experience earlier recovery and discharge from rehabilitation facilities compared to patients who don’t undertake a prehabilitation plan.
How long does the prehabilitation plan take?
It may take a surgeon between 4-6 weeks to make a decision to proceed with surgery which leaves the patient with a great opportunity to participate in a prehabilitation plan. However, we have seen patients who have had the luxury of scheduling in a date for surgery 3-4 months in the future, giving them more time to participate in prehabilitation. There isn’t a blueprint, rather it is created based on the specific case.
What is our approach to prehabilitation?
A good prehabilitation plan should include not only physical exercises to optimise strength, endurance, flexibility, mobility and proprioception at the affected and surrounding joints but also include medical advice, nutrition and psychological support with a multimodal approach being the most beneficial for the patient.