Misconceptions about Rehab after Hip Replacement

Posted by Jennifer Campbell, NHA

Assistant Administrator/Admissions Director

Posted by Jen Campbell


When patients undergo surgery for a hip replacement, they don’t always know what to expect in terms of recovery. And they often don’t think they’ll need rehab. Here’s why – and the real reasons rehab can help.

  1. I don’t need help. Many patients think they can return from the hospital after surgery and recover on their own. For some people, that may be true. But patients require structured exercises and activities to help them regain their strength, flexibility and mobility, and can benefit from the intensive therapy schedule in rehab. At home, it’s easy to take a break – or even a day off. But at rehab, you’ll be working two to three hours a day, up to seven days a week. And that commitment will speed your recovery.


  1. My family can support me. Some patients want to return home after surgery because they believe family members can provide all of the assistance they need. While family members can help with chores, cooking and running errands, these individuals are not specially trained to provide the kind of assistance you need to help you regain your independence. At rehab, you’ll work with an interdisciplinary team of therapists with clinical experience and best practices to help you recover.


  1. Recovery will be straightforward. Most patients after hip replacement surgery will progress without complications. But in some cases, problems may arise, such as medication side effects, blood clots or infection. If a medical issues occurs while you’re recovering at home, family members may not know the warning signs and when to call for help. But at rehab, a team of nurses staff the center round-the-clock to intervene in case of emergency.


  1. I’ll be up and about in no time. Many people want to return home right after surgery because they believe they’ll be able to return to their normal routines quickly. But in reality, the average short-term recovery time for a total hip replacement is four to six weeks. At home, it’s easy to rely on family to help, to move things within reach or make other accommodations so you don’t have to do too much, too soon. While taking things slowly is important, you’ll want to continue to work hard, and at rehab, you’ll work with a dedicated team whose goal is to help you return to leading a productive life quickly and safely.


  1. Rehab is just another word for nursing home. When some patients after hip replacement surgery hear the term rehabilitation, they think it’s synonymous with nursing home care. And although some rehabilitation centers are located within nursing homes, there are clear distinctions between the two and the services they provide residents. While nursing homes are residential in nature, rehab centers are designed to help patients work towards returning home through specialized staff, equipment and therapies – and can be an ideal transition environment after surgery.

At West View Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, our team approach to rehabilitation services includes nurses, dietitians, physicians, therapists, social workers and especially the patient and families. Together, we provide rehabilitation services to maximize patients’ quality of life.


About West View Nursing & Rehabilitation Center 

West View Nursing & Rehabilitation Center is a 120-bed skilled nursing facility providing long-term care and rehabilitation services located in West Warwick, Rhode Island. At West View, our commitment is to treat every resident with the respect and dignity that he or she deserves, and to involve them and their family in the development and implementation of their care plan in order
to maximize positive results.



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