Recover Like An Athlete: How Fast Is Rapid Recovery Surgery?

No Pain, No Gain

Injuries can happen no matter an athlete’s skill level or area of practice. After an injury, athletes are typically barred from the game without a complete medical exam or psychological evaluation. Often, professional athletes tap into simple yet key strategies to recover as rapidly as possible. According to some sports medicine experts, communication among health care providers is key to producing the safest and most efficient recovery from injury. Regardless of athletic status or ability, patients can benefit from strategies pioneered by athletes focused on rapid recovery. To maximize mobility after surgery, doctors recommend consistent activity combined with a heightened focus on bodily response.

Get moving, stay moving

Doctors highlight the importance of moving shortly after surgery when considering mobility-boosting surgeries, such as joint replacements. Rapid recovery minimizes pain while limiting the physiological impact on the patient. Key experts recommend using painkillers to manage pain before and after the procedure to allow the patient to mobilize as early as possible after the joint replacement. Patients are encouraged to get out of bed and walk approximately 2 hours after a joint replacement, hastening recovery while prioritizing low costs to patients. Since patients don’t stay in the hospital after a rapid recovery surgery, hospitals can keep charges minimal.

Good pain vs bad pain

The rapid recovery approach to surgery hinges on the patient’s ability to distinguish good from bad pain. Good pain feels like a mild burn, generally lasting a day or two. Ignoring signs of a severe injury can equate to ignoring or misdiagnosing an improperly healing joint. Many physicians recommend paying attention to severe pain, swelling, loss of function, and tingling to determine if medical attention is needed. Patients may report muscle damage and pain if the muscles, tendons, and joints experience too much stress too fast.

Shortening the road to recovery

While not every patient is an athlete, every patient can benefit from utilizing athletic strategies for a faster recovery. Patients can drastically speed up the recovery process the sooner they get moving after surgery. Rather than spending the days after a procedure in a hospital bed, patients can reintroduce movement in all the comforts of home. To boost healing, doctors recommend paying close attention to the body. Distinguishing between good and bad pain can often mean a difference in mobility and overall quality of life.


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