You only have one body, make the most of it!
Most people requiring lower limb joint replacements have associated problems due to years of pain, reduced mobility and altered patterns of movement. It is not uncommon to find someone complaining of back pain when the original problem was with the knee, hip or ankle. This is due to altered forces and
biomechanics of joints causing shear forces and strains through the body. These altered movement patterns can be difficult to recognise in yourself and can be very difficult to alter without guidance and rehabilitation.
It can only take a small amount of time to develop an altered walking pattern, caused by pain and fear following leg surgery. In most cases surgeons are happy for patients to be fully weight bearing, or as the pain allows, as no damage can be done to a new hip or knee by walking on it. From the very first day post-op, physiotherapists often see patients on the ward and begin the first gentle stages to rehab. Massage, passive movements and strengthening exercises can be performed from day one and can be beneficial throughout the post-op months.
Exercises and strengthening can be performed pre-operatively to enhance surgical outcomes. Recent studies have shown that recovery is quicker following pre-op strengthening programs.
"It is true that people who are in better shape going into surgery are in better shape coming out"
Diane Covington, Physician's
Assistant Orthopaedic Surgery,