Following surgical replacement of a joint and acute rehabilitation, there is often need for ongoing attention to the joints of the opposite side due to the stress they have endured over years protecting the replaced joint side. The patient may also have to adjust to the functionality they may gain from a new replacement. They may still favor one side over the other, causing a change in gait that can lead to differences in hip alignment, muscle tension in the back, and even leaning in the upper extremities to accommodate to shifting the weight onto the newly replaced joint. The upper extremities can also be affected from the use of canes or walkers.
Deconditioning can occur from decreased mobility prior to joint replacement and contribute to low endurance tolerance for exercise, even after successful joint replacement. Coexisting medical problems, such as heart disease and diabetes, can also complicate the recovery process. Dr. Tabby will work with the individual, in collaboration with physical therapists and other practitioners, to develop an exercise program that will improve vigor and protect the integrity of the replaced joint and other joints for optimum function.
Physical medicine and rehabilitation specialists like Dr. Tabby are trained to help maintain proper body mechanics and musculoskeletal alignment, which is important for rehabilitation following surgery. Her goal is for patients to gain increased mobility and vigor, while still protecting the newly replaced joint. She wants patients to feel comfortable leading active lives and hopes to provide them with the resources to get to that point.
Dr. Tabby cultivates strong relationships with her patients, built on trust and mutual respect, and practices medicine with a scientific and methodical approach. She cares about developing a strong patient-physician relationship so that patients can feel free to communicate openly and voice the concerns they are having following joint replacement. She will take a careful medical history and perform a thorough examination of the affected joint as well as other areas of the body to look for signs of related stress and tension. In some cases, further tests such as X-ray or MRI may be ordered, or the results from prior exams reviewed, to examine the joint and develop the most appropriate treatment plan.
Easy booking and appointment availability are benefits of working with Dr. Tabby. She encourages all patients to visit her in the office, but for patients with extreme mobility limits, she makes home visits or virtual appointments through HealthTap. Feel free to inquire when speaking with the office staff about all of the available options.
Dr. Tabby will provide a personalized treatment plan for each patient based on their medical history, exam and other conditions following surgery. Dr. Tabby is an advocate of vitamins, nutrition and exercise as part of a healthy self-care routine. Education measures may be implemented as part of the treatment plan to prevent future injury of the replaced joint, or strain on the surrounding joints. Often specific exercises will be demonstrated and “prescribed” to aid in the healing process.
She employs a nonnarcotic treatment method rooted in the judicious use of medications, therefore treatments are more likely to center around “hands on” methods such as topical pain relief, massage, heat or ice application and active participation of the patient to complete recommended therapeutic exercises. Bracing (orthotics) may be employed in combination with any of the above methods to allow for healing and support. She will coordinate care with other specialists as warranted including orthopedics, physical therapy, or other practitioners to develop an exercise plan that will protect the joint, but also improve vigor and stamina following surgery due to the accompanying deconditioning that may have occurred.