MedWatch Today: Why Physiotherapy Is So Important After Orthopedic Surgery


After surgery, having a personalized physiotherapy plan can help ensure that your body is healing properly.

At the community health system, patients who undergo orthopedic surgery are encouraged to move within the first day after their procedure. Our physiotherapists help patients strengthen their muscles around their new joint and regain movement.

Fresno resident Michael Yamane spends a lot of time at the outpatient physiotherapy facility at Clovis Community Medical Center. He is a FedEx employee and had shoulder surgery last November and hip surgery last spring.

“We do a lot of heavy lifting, so I was loading trucks before this all happened, so I was loading the trucks… the TVs, the furniture and the pools and all that big, heavy stuff,” Michael described.

Michael explains, after his total hip replacement on his left hip, “The next morning they tried to get you up and up and see if you could walk, you know I did it slowly. “

Michael works with physiotherapist Erika McFarland.

“At Community, we have a total joint replacement program, and this is where the patient is told before going into surgery, they are told what to expect for the surgery, and then what to do. expect after regarding rehab, ”Erika said.

Erika said that when post-operative patients are in the hospital, a team of physiotherapists will help them start moving slowly. Patients first walk using a walker or crutches.

She continued, “Once you are done in the hospital, we are able to determine if you need to go home for some more therapy at home, or if your functioning is high enough then you can move on. on an outpatient basis. physiotherapy program.

In the outpatient physiotherapy department, Erika works with Michael on strengthening and endurance.

“I did a lot of stretching and balancing and just got back to my normal rhythm,” said Michael.

Erika explained: “For the balance in particular, we worked on the one-leg balance, so I put him up on a counter so he could hang on if he needed to… And that helps not only the hip joint but also his ankle his knee even his core… For his strengthening, we did the squat, we worked on the machines, we liked the leg press for him, we did him doing hamstring curls.

Erika said it is crucial that post-operative patients stick to their rehabilitation plan, as it will help them heal more safely and quickly. It is also important to put into practice what they learn here at home.

“We can help give you the tools to specifically help weak muscles or tight muscles or different joints that need that better movement,” Erika said.

“It has helped me gain confidence and I can feel more strength in my legs and before I can even push myself anymore,” Michael concluded.


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