Leeds hospital trust launches campaign to help people prepare for surgery

A new campaign has been launched at Leeds hospitals this week to encourage anyone needing surgery to help prepare themselves and ‘get in shape’ mentally and physically.

Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 11:45 am
Pictured with a Shape Up 4 Surgery branded Leeds Teaching Hospitals delivery van are, from left: Suzanne Ling, Pre-Assessment Sister; Ann-Marie Jones, Pre-Assessment Senior Sister; Sophie Blow, Clinical Lead; Martyn Robertson, Consultant Anaesthetist.

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust’s ‘Shape Up 4 Surgery’ offers advice to those facing surgery on keeping well in the run-up - to ensure a quicker and faster recovery.

It comes as theatre capacity continues to increase at the trust as it emerges from the grip of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The trust’s has launched a website, www.shapeup4surgery.co.uk, to highlight the need to stay active and increase activity while waiting for surgery to improve cardiovascular fitness and muscle strength - leading to a reduced length of stay in hospital, a reduction in post-operative chest infections and an overall faster recovery time.

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Hospital data shows smokers stay on average at least one day longer in hospital post-surgery than non-smokers.

And patients who are underweight or overweight have been found to have poorer surgical outcomes and longer stays in hospital.

Sophie Blow, Clinical Lead at Leeds Teaching Hospitals, said: “We realise that coming into hospital for surgery can be extremely daunting and a complete unknown for many, and so Shape Up 4 Surgery is a website where we have tried to put a friendlier face on surgery, and provide plenty of resources to help people feel more confident, aware and in control of getting themselves ready.

“There’s no doubt that getting yourself in the best shape possible for surgery will have a positive impact on how well your surgery goes and how quickly you recover.

"And we’re hoping that patients will feel engaged by the information they see to make even small changes that can make a big difference.

"You wouldn’t expect to run a marathon without any training, having surgery is a little bit like that and Shape Up 4 Surgery is Leeds Teaching Hospitals’ part in helping patients get the training in.”

Under normal circumstances, the trust carries out around 50,000 elective surgeries each year.

The new campaign anchors around four key areas - physical, lifestyle, awareness and next steps - to prepare for elective surgeries, which under normal circumstance total around 50,000 each year at the trust.

The advice will also be discussed at appointments, with pre-assessment teams at LGI, St James’, Chapel Allerton and Wharfedale hospitals explaining the ways patients can make a difference to their recovery.

The next stage in what will be a long-term campaign is to work with GPs and healthcare providers in working with patients as far in advance of any hospital as possible.

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