The Power of Prehabilitation

Prepare your mind and body for surgery.

Actively preparing for surgery, a process known as prehabilitation, can support your postoperative recovery. One recent study found that patients who participated in a prehabilitation program experienced shorter hospital stays and lower hospital costs than those who did not.

An effective prehabilitation program consists of both physical preparation—which may include stress reduction, exercise, smoking cessation, and dietary adjustments—along with mental preparation.

“Understanding what to expect and getting to know your health care team in advance can help decrease anxiety,” says Carol Mohr, RN, ONC, Nurse Educator at HSHS Sacred Heart and St. Joseph’s hospitals. “Also, learning ahead of time what you’ll need to do after your operation can help ensure success and reduce the risk of potential complications.”

Joint Renew Camp

Patients undergoing a total hip or a total knee procedure at HSHS Sacred Heart and St. Joseph’s hospitals are encouraged to attend Joint Renew Camp, a free prehabilitation program that addresses surgery preparation, what to expect the day of your surgery, anesthesia, postoperative care, discharge planning, occupational therapy, and physical therapy.

Mohr recommends selecting a “coach” (a spouse, family member, or close friend) to attend the prehabilitation program with you. This person can encourage you to do your preoperative and postoperative exercises, help prepare your home for life after surgery, and act as a cheerleader throughout your journey.

 For more information about HSHS Sacred Heart and HSHS St. Joseph’s hospitals’ Joint Renew Camp, call 715.717.1402.

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