Monday, April 23, 2018

Training for a Faster Recovery from Surgery (Part-2)

Basically, the process of training for surgery involves common sense things, which anyone can do easily. An impending surgery weighs on your mind so heavily often that you forget all about those common sense things; it is a pity! Getting started is simple, though! Here are a few such things you can do easily.

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Talk to your doctor

A detailed medical evaluation is usually done when a condition you face requires surgery. Discuss the evaluation with your doctor to find out exercises, if any, you should avoid, or any you should pay special attention to.

Start early

Seven days of training can help you in your recovery, even if your surgery is due in just a week. The longer you can train, the better would be the preparation.

Don’t overdo it

Since there is a definite cut off point, the date of the surgery, you may tend to push yourself too hard to get as fit and as fast as you can. That is a big mistake! Don’t overdo it!

Start slow

Begin with gentle exercises and as your comfort levels increase, move on to higher levels. Don’t force the pace – that could lead to more harm than good. If in doubt, consult your doctor.

The duration

How long you exercise is as important as the type of workout. That does not mean pushing yourself to the point of exhaustion, which could be counterproductive. Increase the duration the way you increase the intensity – slowly and gradually.

Be regular

Be as regular as possible doing your exercise – try to work out five or six days a week. If you miss a day, do not try compensating it the next day – you could hurt yourself doing extra time without knowing it.

Having company is nice

Since the reason for the training is a medical condition, having a friend along is a good safety net: they can spot signs of any new problems earlier than you do.


If your doctor has not given you any dietary advice, it probably means that there are no restrictions on what you can eat. However, controlling your diet can be very beneficial to your recovery. Ask the doctor if you can consult a nutritionist or dietician for advice on changes in food habits that will help you to prepare for surgery.

Bad habits

If you have been planning to give up smoking or reduce your alcohol intake, this is the right time to do it. Even a few weeks without these habits can make a difference to your overall health and ability to recover.

Talk to your insurance agent

As soon as you come to know you will be going in for surgery, talk to your insurance agent. You should get a clear pre-surgery picture of your coverage, the costs covered by the policy and the amount you will have to pay from your own funds. That will make you get ready for the inevitable, with a better frame of mind.

The last thing you need is a hospital bill that would spell disaster. That kind of shock could slow down your recovery!

Training for a Faster Recovery from Surgery (Part-1)

Health insurance is a highly contentious subject that generates a great deal of heated debate on both sides. The insurance options and the issue of deductibles do cause often a great deal of confusion among those who want to buy or renew their policies. Consulting with an insurance professional is the best way to get the coverage you need, at a price you can afford. They have the expertise to evaluate objectively your health needs and then work out the coverage that is best for you.

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Even with health insurance, surgery can leave a big hole in your pocket, because of the deductibles and direct costs.  If the procedure is not an emergency and you have time to prepare for it, there are things you can do to reduce the eventual financial burden. This is relevant at any age, but the older you are, the more important it is.

Benefits of preparing for surgery

Preparing for surgery means toning up your body; it will help reduce your recovery time and the duration of your stay in hospital. Both these factors will bring down the overall costs and the amount you will have to shell out from your own savings.

Preparing for surgery is akin to training for a sporting event for an optimal performance. Unfortunately, few if any, believe that training for surgery helps. No two people are alike and the way they prepare for surgery depends on age, overall health, the nature of the surgery and other factors. No preparation/training should be done without the surgeon’s approval.

Training for surgery is not just a concept: clinical research has long been done at the University of Michigan. Patients were encouraged to exercise, practice breathing techniques and follow controlled diet charts. Preliminary results show that patients in the experimental group saved well over $2,000 in hospital costs, when compared to those patients who did not train for surgery.

Similarly, impressive results are available in a similar research program on seniors at Duke University Medical Center. Elderly patients who did not prepare for abdominal surgery spent an average of six days in hospital, while those who did spent just four days. About 62% of the former needed home health care after leaving hospital, while only 51% of the latter required such care.

The University of California, San Francisco, has a regular Surgery Wellness Program for senior citizens who are slated for surgery. The objective is to reduce the recovery time as much as possible. The program includes interaction with dieticians, physical trainers and occupational therapists.

According to the Chair of the American College of Surgeons Geriatric Surgery Task Force, “Preparation is as important if not more important than the surgery itself.” This is a new and expanding field of medicine; unfortunately, not all hospitals have the facilities to help patients in this area.

Training for surgery is more than just reducing the amount of hospitalization expenses you will have to pay yourself; it is as well about recovering faster with greater comfort. However, there are a few things that anyone (with medical approval) can do to prepare for surgery. The second part of this blog will say more about this possibility.