Life After Amputation: What to Expect for the New Amputee

Life after amputation comes with significant challenges. You’ll navigate a terrain filled with growth opportunities and challenges, and it’s essential to prepare yourself mentally and emotionally beforehand. Our hand specialists in Fresno, CA will work with you to ensure you’re fully prepared for life after amputation, but in the meantime, here’s a guide on what to expect.

After Surgery

The first day following your surgery may be the hardest as you adjust to your new reality. You’ll need to wear compression garments and bandages to control swelling. You should keep yourself in an upright and elevated position, too. It’s normal to feel uncomfortable during this time, and our team will ensure you have medications to help manage pain. You’ll check in with our team soon after surgery to ensure you’re managing side effects and not experiencing any complications. Once your recovery has progressed, you’ll meet with our hand specialists to remove any stitches. At every step, you’ll be given detailed aftercare instructions and are encouraged to contact us with any concerns.

The Physical Therapy Process

The recovery period post-amputation is a journey lasting for years with adjustments both physically and mentally. It involves more than just losing an extremity physically; it requires an overall restructuring of how you live, which includes relearning activities that once were second nature. The process of healing is mainly supported by physical therapy and rehabilitation. The central goals in this are the development of muscles (those that are still active) and independence. Physical therapy can be a frustrating and difficult process at first, but it constitutes the first step toward regaining functionality. For instance, our team will focus on the progressive nature, selecting gentle movements that later develop into more intensive physical training. With complete therapy, you can regain functionality and feel more confident in your day-to-day activities – it’s also an important way to cope with the loss of an extremity and process the many different feelings you may be having.

Long-Term Outlook

Long-term care after an amputation includes both physical and emotional recovery. Physical rehabilitation frequently includes physiotherapy, which helps you to adjust to the new normal and restore functionality. Emotional recovery encompasses various dimensions, including mourning, loss, sensation-related concerns, body image adaptation, and societal perceptions. Negative thoughts are normal, and you may benefit from counseling or psychotherapy. Accepting reality after an amputation is a challenging process, especially after a severe and sudden event, and emphasizes the importance of emotional support throughout the recovery process.

Contact Regional Hand Center to Get Started

Life after amputation is a journey filled with challenges but also opportunities for growth and empowerment. Our team of hand specialists can support you every step of the way with our combined decades of excellence in the hand and upper extremity. Fill out our online contact form and schedule a consultation appointment at the Regional Hand Center of Central California today.

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