Rapid recovery post-surgery

Over time there has been a very definite move towards more rapid rehabilitation following hip surgery.  Initially, and many years ago, patients were kept in bed for a prolonged period of time after the operation to allow the soft tissues to settle and then had steady rehabilitation.  Over years, with advances most certainly in surgical technique but also in anaesthetic technique, alongside improvements in our inventory, implants and wound care, we have been able to increase the rate at which our patients are mobilised, rehabilitated and then able to go home to continue with their exercises as they look to return to satisfactory function.

I believe the surgical approach and the soft tissue exposure is a very significant part of that journey. There are other very significant factors as detailed on the anaesthetic side, in wound infiltration, physiotherapy rehabilitation and indeed in the implants themselves that are relevant.

I am very keen to get my patients active and mobile as soon as possible.  I believe strongly that the safest place for patients to rehabilitate is within their own home environment as long as they feel safe, confident and comfortable and are able to push on with their exercises. 

While I have performed day case hip surgery, as things stand, I am looking to develop this further as part of an integrated multidisciplinary care pathway. 

At this stage I feel that aiming for patients to be discharged on the first or second post-operative day optimises their confidence, allows them to start the initial part of their mobilisation including going up and down stairs before they go home, allows them to be confident and comfortable at the time of discharge and, I think, allows patients to rehabilitate soundly in their own environment relatively soon following surgery.