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5 Reasons it’s Essential to Get Physical Therapy Before Breast Reduction Surgery

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Preparing for surgery typically includes planning transportation, taking time off from work, organizing childcare, preparing meals ahead of time, and setting up your home to be as comfortable as possible during recovery. During all of this preparation, wouldn’t you think preparing your body for surgery would be the most important aspect? ABSOLUTELY!
 
The best way to prepare the body for surgery is to seek out a physical therapist for prehabilitation treatment prior to your breast reduction surgery. Prehabilitation or “prehab” involves designing an individualized exercise program to improve functional capacity and decrease recovery time after surgery.
 
Not only is physical therapy essential to prepare for surgery, but also necessary to recover from it as well! Individualized physical therapy treatment after breast reduction surgery addresses muscle weakness, shoulder dysfunction, back pain, scarring, aerobic deconditioning, and much more to ensure best surgery outcomes!
 

With all of that in mind, here are 5 reasons it’s essential to seek out physical therapy treatment prior to breast reduction surgery:
 

1. Surgery may be covered by insurance
For many women considering breast reduction surgery, the main reason for consultation is because of low back pain, neck pain, or shoulder pain related to large breast size. Additional physical symptoms, such as pain with prolonged sitting, standing, poor posture, and difficulty with physical activity because of your breast size allows for a physical therapist to document your impairments to prove the medical necessity of surgery.
 
2. Improved mental health

Regular exercise can boost mood, improve sleep quality, and help deal with anxiety. Endorphins released during exercise assist in increasing concentration by stimulating brain cell growth. Additionally, habitual physical activity can increase a person’s self-worth.
 

3. Increased physical fitness

People who stay physically active to increase muscle flexibility, strength, and endurance tend to recover better after surgery! The stronger you go into surgery, the easier your recovery will be! Creating an individualized exercise program with a physical therapist will provide you with the resources necessary for successful breast reduction surgery outcomes. 
 

4. Decreased recovery time after surgery

People who participate in a prehab program prior to surgery have consistently demonstrated quicker recovery time and are back to their normal daily routine much sooner compared to people who do not take part in physical therapy! A prehabilitation program will increase focused physical activity to prepare the patient for the stress of surgery and allow the body to heal during their recovery phase of rehab. 
 

5. Pain management
As mentioned earlier in this post, the main reason for breast reduction surgery is because of low back pain, neck pain, or shoulder pain related to large breast size. Physical therapy will include manual therapy interventions aimed to mitigate your back pain and get you feeling great as you prepare for breast reduction surgery.
 
References:
Surgery, P. P. (2020, July 20). How to use Nutrition and Exercise to Prepare for Surgery, and Optimize Recovery and Healing. PRMA. https://prma-enhance.com/breast-reconstruction-blog/use-nutrition-exercise-to-prepare-for-surgery-and-optimize-recovery/
(2020, December 2). What Is Prehabilitation? University Orthopaedic Associates, LLC. https://www.uoanj.com/what-is-prehabilitation/
Robinson, L. (2020). The Mental Health Benefits of Exercise – HelpGuide.org. HelpGuide. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/the-mental-health-benefits-of-exercise.htm