Surgery of the stifle joint is the most common orthopedic procedure done by specialists. Stabilization of CCL ruptures and medial and lateral patellar luxations are the most common stifle joint surgeries. Rehabilitation after stifle joint surgery, particularly after reconstruction of the anterior cruciate ligament, has definite benefits. Immediate postoperative rehabilitation includes passive range-of-motion exercise, ice application, stretching, and weight-shifting exercises; later rehabilitation primarily comprises protected strengthening exercises.
Rehabilitation is particularly important in patients facing permanent complications or in those with severe disease, including patients predisposed to permanent loss of joint motion because of age, trauma severity, repeated surgeries, long-term joint immobilization, or limb disuse. Patients with limited mobility due to size, age, body condition, fitness level are also important candidates for rehabilitation.
The patient should perceive rehabilitation as a positive experience. A quiet, comfortable environment; positive reinforcement; and adapting the rehabilitation protocol to the patient’s personality help achieve this goal. Most patients undergo rehabilitation without sedation. This allows the therapist to more objectively assess the pain management protocol as well as the joint. With proper pain management, patients tolerate gentle manipulation of the joint throughout the early postoperative period. Pain is assessed at regular intervals and managed aggressively.
Implementing a comprehensive pain management protocol is critically important to develop a positive relationship with the patient early and to sustain this relationship throughout therapy. Schedule an appointment online or call us at 904-209-5740!