In many ways, the breast reconstruction recovery process is just as important as the surgery itself. Patients are given ample instructions on the do’s and don’ts after their surgery to help promote a fast recovery and to prevent post-surgical complications. Dr. Ravi Tandon can provide this detailed information to breast reconstruction patients during a consultation at practice serving the New Orleans, LA area.
Exercise is a key part of breast reconstruction recovery. Let’s consider some basic exercise guidelines for patients in the weeks after their procedure.
In order to make a full recovery after breast reconstruction surgery, exercise is going to be crucial to your success. Exercise will restore the full range of motion and the chest and arms, and will also help prevent complications from occurring after you’ve undergone surgery.
With that in mind, it’s important that patients take things slowly. Healing takes time, and it’s important that you give your body the time it needs to recover. Gradually increasing physical activity over the course of six weeks is ideal.
After your breast reconstruction surgery, you’ll want to avoid the following physical activities:
All of these activities can put a lot of stress on the chest as you recover. After two weeks have passed, you can slowly return to some of these activities using caution and discretion.
After undergoing any sort of cosmetic or reconstructive surgery at our New Orleans area practice, we always recommend patients walk a little bit each day. This promotes circulation and prevents the formation of blood clots. This is especially important in the first week or so after surgery when patients will typically be resting for most of the day.
By the third day after surgery, very light exercises will be approved. Here are a few post-breast reconstruction exercise suggestions from The American Cancer Society:
The second week after surgery, patients can perform a few more light exercises based on their surgeon’s instructions. Some simple recommendations include:
By the third and fourth weeks after breast reconstruction, patients will start increasing their shoulder and arm mobility. Some patients may want to take things at a slower pace. The variety of exercises during his point is much wider.
Exercises during this time will typically involve raising the hands above the shoulders and the head. This will help stretch the chest and shoulder area, building back some strength and mobility.
After about six weeks, breast reconstruction patients can return to some normal exercise routines. Light cardio and stretching tends to be best, while patients may want to be more conservative with a return to strenuous cardio, weight training, and strength training. During follow-up visits to our New Orleans area surgery center, we can offer insight into ideal exercise routines.
For more information about breast reconstruction surgery and what you can expect during the recovery process, be sure to contact a skilled cosmetic reconstructive surgeon. You can reach the Tandon Plastic Surgery team by phone at (504) 455-1000.