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AustraliaVirtual rehab cutting recovery time for surgery patients

14:30  12 july  2019
14:30  12 july  2019 Source:   9news.com.au

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Patients who have had a knee replacement will tell you that once the anaesthesia wears off they feel plenty of pain.

Leading orthopaedic surgeon Professor Richard de Steiger says in the past doctors would order patients to put their feet up and rest after surgery.

“When joint replacements first started people were recommended to stay in bed for 9 days,” the Epworth Healthcare Professor told 9news.com.au.

Virtual rehab cutting recovery time for surgery patients© 9News Virtual rehab is helping knee reconstruction patients get moving faster.

Now the prescription is for patients to start moving as soon as possible.

Virtual rehab cutting recovery time for surgery patients
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“Now everyone is up either the day of surgery or the following day.

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Rapid rehabilitation is the world-wide goal - "to get people going quicker.”

To encourage mobility and this rapid recovery Epworth Healthcare has introduced some virtual rehabilitation assistants.

Dubbed “My Stay” the program is run by 3D computer animations that take patients through a specific mobility program consisting of exercises and daily physical goals.

A clinical study of “My Stay” by Deakin University’s Jo McDonall showed it was producing tangible benefits.

“They (patients) were able to move more because they had less pain,” Dr McDonnall said.

“They stayed in hospital on average a day less.”

Having access to a virtual medical team means patients can carry out rehabilitation exercises without the strict supervision of a physiotherapist, nurse or doctor.

“It’s just about giving patients the tools to know what they need to do,” Dr McDonnall said.

The program in no way replaces the human care and support offered in hospital, but presents an affordable way of reducing pain and getting patients out of their hospital bed sooner.

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