Pre-habilitation is physical therapy prior to a surgical procedure or chemo therapy for strengthening, conditioning, and education to ensure a successful outcome. Many people feel better prepared for surgery or chemo after a strengthening program because it strengthens weak muscles that could prevent you from getting out of bed, walking to the restroom and walking in the halls. Many times after a surgical procedure or chemo, patients are forced to go to a nursing home or hospital rehab because their functions have diminished, leaving them unsafe to go home (Ries, 2016). Going to a nursing home, or anywhere other than home, can devastate you and your family members. Pre-habilitation will help you prevent unexpected discharge planning. In addition, prehab will provide post-op education, procedure precautions, home adaptation, and walking with assistance and/or a device, increasing a patient’s success rate.
Pre-habilitation is an individualized plan of care based on your needs and desires. Your therapist will evaluate you and your needs to develop a plan of care and home exercise program. The home exercise program allows you to become comfortable and familiar with the exercise program you will most likely be doing while in the hospital. Some pre-habilitation programs are 1 visit, while others are a few weeks. Our clinic will help you decide what works best for you.
Sherri Boos, PT, DPT
Ries, E. (2016). Better Sooner and Later: Prehabilitation. PT in Motion, 1-12. Retrieved from http://www.apta.org/PTinMotion/2016/2/Prehabilitation/