Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Fitness, Not Age, Is Key To Successful Surgery

Fit older people recovered better and had shorter hospital stays following surgery, suggests a 2013 study conducted by Newcastle University and the Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Participants pre- and post-surgery fitness levels were tested to make these determinations. Other advantages of being fit before and after surgery are that fitness can: (1)enhance balance and coordination (2)improve cardiac health aiding the flow of blood to the affected surgical area, and (3) reduce the risk of falling and other injuries. Let's explore what this may imply as it pertains to successful spinal stenosis surgery.

How Pre-surgical and Post-surgical Fitness Can Affect Spinal Stenosis Surgery Outcome and Long-term Wellness

1. Choosing the right types of fitness is essential for daily wellness and preventing future injury. With a myriad of exercise routines out there, choose one that is most ideal for everyday wellness and recovery from spinal stenosis surgery. One good adjunct to physical therapy is aquatic therapy:

  • Exercising in water increases strength, mobility, balance and coordination without having to bear weight.
  • Following spinal stenosis surgery, states brainline.org, water provides a natural environment to give the brain a boost to re-teach everyday ranges of motion and accelerate healing. The YMCAhealthylivingcenter.com offers one place for specialized water walking, water therapy and water aerobic classes in almost all communities across the country.
  • In a life guard-supervised pool, aquatic therapy can be used as a self-guided exercise.

Other good calisthenic type exercise maybe performed before getting out of bed or perhaps on a carpeted floor or exercise mat. Ask your physical therapy professional.

2. Professionally guided pre- and post-fitness support is key for successful surgery and long-term wellness. Best practices combine therapeutic exercises, occupational therapy and physical therapy to shorten healing time and help you return to the activities you love most. Sometimes patients may be so debilitated from their spinal condition, that simple activities such as driving to and from appointments and walking long distances to and from buildings can be difficult without assistance. Assisted living environments can be useful when patients do not have access or help from family members nearby. One such facility is the Emeritus Assisted Living Facility as it offers multi-faceted therapeutic support in one location. There are many such facilities across the nation.

Get Active, Stay Active

Motivation to exercise can be difficult to muster up when experiencing discomfort. Patients who have onsite support staff are more likely to regain fitness and regular activities of daily living because rehabilitation is more convenient to access. The National Care Planning Council supports the idea that an onsite community of trained professionals combines well in an enviroment whereby a patient is surrounded by others their age who can help boost morale and make the recovery phase an engaging experience. Once one recovers from spinal stenosis surgery and returned to an optimal fitness level, your physical therapist can offer customized suggestions for the right types of continuing exercise. This routine should include ways to correct posture and demonstrate exercise techniques to avoid future injury and maintain daily wellness.