July 19, 1947

Early Ambulation and Related Procedures in Surgical Management

JAMA. 1947;134(12):1055. doi:10.1001/jama.1947.02880290069033

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This is a highly personalized account of the experience of one surgeon with early ambulation postoperatively. The author does not claim priority, and indeed, many surgeons have long practiced some form of early rising after operation. This does not mean a shortening of the accepted lengthy stay in bed by a few days but involves a systematic attempt to force (better persuade) even reluctant patients out of bed within a few hours after operation. The advantages of such procedures are now generally recognized and need not be detailed here. Early ambulation has thus become the preventive phase of physical rehabilitation by preventing the debility associated with confinement to bed for any long period. The author outlines briefly some historical features of the technic and the physiologic principles forming the scientific basis for the method. He is a strong advocate of the transverse incision, and the use of steel wire for

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