The rehabilitation process includes pain treatment, breathing re-education, as well as functional, motor and sphincterial re-education.
The main objectives of breathing rehabilitation are to:
- achieve optimal blood oxygen levels.
- Promote the dissolving of and then elimination of bronchial secretions.
- Train the patient how to best face and overcome physical efforts.
Motor re-education aims at:
- Promoting autonomy in moving to and from the bed, allowing the patient to slowly reach a correct standing and walking position.
- Helping the patient adopt the correct posture when lying, sitting or standing.
- Promoting progressive tolerance of physical efforts.
Exercises in this phase are designed to:
- Re-establish good general muscular tone.
- Counteract the effects of long periods of immobilisation on the metabolism of bones, muscles and articulations so as to prevent muscle contractures, osteoporosis and thromboembolic complications.
Attention is also paid to the patient's posture in order to avoid the development of skin breakdown. It must be stressed how beneficial training is from a psychological point of view: in fact, it helps reduce and manage anxiety and stress, contributes to higher morale and promotes greater self-esteem.
Sphincterial re-education consists of early removal of bladder catheters (usually within 1-2 days). Functional re-education aims at attaining autonomy in carrying out daily activities and achieving early oral nutrition. Patients also learn the correct use of stomas.
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