8 Reasons Why You Need Physical Therapy After Surgery

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8 Reasons Why You Need Physical Therapy After Surgery

By Dr. Eric Hefferon PT, DPT, CSCS, GPS, CIDN

Physical therapy can make or break a surgical outcome! The lack of physical therapy and the quality of physical therapy can greatly determine your overall outcomes. We MUST advocate physical therapy after ALL surgeries in order to improve patient outcomes. Here are the top 8 reasons to attend physical therapy…

Improve Mobility

Surgery can cause a mobility limitation in the region or body part that was operated. Our body tends to protect the area of trauma, which can cause muscle/tissue tightness, spasms, swelling and limited range of motion. Physical therapy can help regain mobility in all directions through mobilizations with movement, myofascial release, and other manual therapy techniques.

Improve Pain

A surgical incision is trauma to the body, which our body signals as pain. Pain varies from patient to patient as well as the extent of the surgery. It is critical to improve swelling, promote healing and improve mobility to reduce overall pain. If physical therapy is not performed, surgical pain can become more chronic.

Increase Strength

Our body tends to lose strength very quickly due to the pain, swelling, and lack of mobility. The longer the hospital stays or bed mobility the faster muscle strength declines. Physical therapy will focus on gradual strengthening of the injured site while keeping the rest of the body mobile and strong. How much to lift? How often? When to progress exercises? They are all questions a physical therapist can answer. Doing too much weight can cause re-injury while doing too little can slow the progression. The right dosage is necessary and Impact Physical Therapy is here to help!

Reduce Secondary Issues

Infection, blood clots, and other complications can occur after surgery and a physical therapist can help to reduce secondary complications from occurring. Often these complications are more costly and debilitating. Tailored movement after surgery with a physical therapy will help to reduce the risk for infection, contractures, and blood clots.

Improve Cardiovascular Limitations

Many times exercise is limited after a surgery, which can greatly affect our cardiovascular & cardiorespiratory systems. A physical therapist will design a unique program to address your cardiovascular limitations while considering your specific impairments or restrictions.

Reduce Scar Tissue Formation

A surgical incision will cause scar tissue formation, which is a normal part of healing. Without proper manual therapy ,an increase in scar tissue formation can occur overtime creating havoc on the entire body. A physical therapist can perform many types of tissue mobilization techniques that can break up scar tissue and create normal flexibility.

Activity/Exercise Progression

Ever wonder how when you can get back to volleyball after an ACL tear or return to CrossFit after a shoulder surgery? What type of programing is involved after surgery will depend on the individual, the surgery performed, and patient goals. A physical therapist will combine all these aspects and create an individualized, progressive exercise regimen.

Return to Sport, Work and Recreational Activities

Physical therapists can be the best trainers! We can take a patient through the entire healing process: from immediately post surgery to return to sporting activities. Physical therapists can be the best choice as they are experts in biomechanics and can make sure you are performing at a high level while minimizing your risk for injury.

Not all physical therapy is created equal! Choose Impact Physical Therapy to see immediate post surgical results and accelerate your healing time!

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About Dr. Eric Hefferon

Dr. Eric Hefferon received his advanced doctorate degree in physical therapy from the innovative A.T. Still University. He has been practicing in the west valley for 6 years and has made strong ties to local gyms and medical practitioners. Dr. Hefferon started Impact Physical Therapy due to his passion for an individualized healthcare approach. He knew by creating a clinic that was out of network he could help give patients the results they deserve. His treatment style attracts patients from all over the valley and even out of state. People will travel to seek Dr. Hefferon’s solutions!

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