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How to Exercise After Gallbladder Surgery

By Sharin Griffin ; Updated April 18, 2017

Gallbladder surgery is generally performed laproscopically, requiring only two to three incisions and providing a faster healing time. More serious conditions require major surgery, leaving your recovery lasting up to six weeks. After your surgery, it is important to be able to return to regular dieting and exercise to enhance your healing process. For this reason, differing levels of exercise are recommended by your doctor starting as early as the day after surgery.

Walk as much as comfortably possible the day after your surgery. According to the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons, walking the following day is encouraged to speed the healing process and prevent blood clots. Walk in five- to 10-minute increments, slowly working your way to longer periods of time as the days pass.

Avoid lifting or straining of your abdominal muscles until your doctor clears you to resume normal activity. Strenuous lifting or straining can open closed wounds and cause internal bleeding or reopening of your incision sites.

Exercise on the days you feel well enough to do so. According to the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons, you determine what days you exercise so as to avoid nausea, vomiting or muscle strain. Never exercise past your physical limitations following gallbladder removal.

Wear loose-fitting exercise clothing to prevent rubbing and irritation of the incision sites. According to the American College of Surgeons, tight restrictive clothing such as spandex can cause further injury. Risk of infection is also greater in materials that do not breathe, allowing sweat and bacteria to become trapped against your skin.

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