Recovery from shoulder surgery can be a long process, even with modern day arthroscopic techniques that are minimally invasive. One of the best ways to help speed up healing and improve patient comfort is with cold therapy and compression.
However, traditional cold therapy techniques, although effective, are difficult to apply after shoulder surgery. Ice packs don't stay in place, patients have a hard time applying therapeutic cold on their own, and compression of the shoulder is also difficult to administer simply because of the anatomy.
Cold Therapy and Compression for Shoulder Surgery Recovery
Despite the challenges of applying cold and compression to the shoulder, it remains one of the best ways to accelerate healing and improve the overall recovery process after surgery. The reasons for this include:
Pain management - Many patients suffer from pain after shoulder surgery but only want to take medication for a limited period of time. Cold therapy helps reduce pain by temporary dulling nerve endings. When you combine this with active compression that fully encloses the entire shoulder joint, the cold is allowed to penetrate deeper and last longer for more effective pain reduction.
Swelling control - Although swelling is a normal part of the healing process, if it gets out of control it can contribute to a longer recovery and increase patient discomfort. When cold therapy and active compression are applied after shoulder surgery, swelling is reduced and the damaged tissues are able to heal more quickly.
Risk reduction - Like any medical procedure, shoulder surgery comes with some risk. Cold and compression therapy help reduce infection by improving blood flow, stimulating tissue repair and accelerating the wound healing process.
So how do you overcome the challenges associated with the application of cold therapy and compression after shoulder surgery? Traditional ice packs are simply not realistic, and although compression bandages are effective, they are cumbersome to apply to the shoulder. The Game Ready active compression and cold therapy system solves all of these problems and is proven to contribute to a faster recovery after surgery.
Adjustable wraps conform to the body to provide uniform pressure and temperature to the entire area surrounding the shoulder joint. This means that therapeutic cold can enter from all angles, not just from a single cold source like an ice pack. While cold water flows through the wrap, air is simultaneously pumped through to provide active compression. The wraps are easy to apply, so physical therapists and even patients can administer the therapy without difficulty.
If you are ready to give your patients the option for a faster shoulder surgery recovery, get in touch with Game Ready today.