Is surgery right for you?

With the increase in the prevalence of injuries and chronic diseases, the demand for surgery has never been more sort after. 1 million Australians have orthopaedic surgery each year, with this expected to considerably rise over the next few years. While hip and joint replacements are expected to increase by a staggering 276%.

Why are so many people getting surgery?

Time, convenience and work demands can all play a major role in why people opt to choose a surgical option and in some cases surgery is required. For example, you may have been involved in a significant accident and require immediate surgery or suffered a ligament tear on the sporting field.

But what about those who opt for a surgical option over physiotherapy? Studies have shown that physiotherapy is particularly helpful for people recovering from many conditions such as osteoarthritis and meniscal tears. If you do undergo surgery, orthopaedic surgeons recommend physiotherapy after your surgery. Whether it be losing weight or strengthening muscles to correct muscle imbalances, physiotherapy is extremely beneficial.

How physiotherapy can help

Many conditions such as osteoarthritis, back and neck pain can all be managed with a physiotherapy program. People suffering from chronic disease or persistent pain are rarely recommended to undergo surgery as their first treatment option. Physiotherapy has been shown to reduce pain, improve quality of life and increase muscle strength.

For example, GLA:D, which is an exercise education and exercise program designed for hip and knee osteoarthritis reduces symptom progression by 32% as well as reporting less pain.

Physiotherapy should be considered

Physiotherapy can not only provide a tangible solution to your condition but also educate you on how to reduce your symptoms from coming back and manage your pain. Your physiotherapist will provide cardiovascular exercises, strengthening exercises, improve your range of movement and provide stretching exercises depending on your condition. They may utilise manual therapy or dry needling to assist you in achieving better outcomes, faster.

Surgery may not always be the right solution for you, and depending on your condition a physiotherapy program and simple lifestyle adjustments should be considered to improve and manage your condition. Even losing 5kg can improve pain symptoms by a meaningful amount.

Lifestyle choices

Making simple adjustments to your lifestyle can make a world of difference. People who suffer from a chronic disease such as osteoarthritis can be impacted with a host of other chronic conditions such as obesity. Exercising and a healthy diet can improve your pain and combined with a physiotherapy program can greatly reduce your symptoms.

See how the Lifecare team can get your movement back and reduce the need for surgery.