Whether you are taking a walk in the park or taking part in elite athletic training – keeping your musculoskeletal system strong and healthy improves not just your mobility, but your quality of life.
The musculoskeletal (MSK) system refers to a complex network of muscles, bones, joints, tendons, and ligaments that make up the foundation of mobility. Supporting everything we do, the MSK system provides the structure, function and protection for our entire body. A strong musculoskeletal system gives us the fundamentals for getting around and staying active.
At Mount Sinai, we deliver excellence in care, education and research for patients with disorders of the bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, joints, cartilage, and other connective tissue. Through the Granovsky Gluskin Division of Orthopaedics, we perform more than 700 surgeries per year, a significant proportion of which are complex knee revision surgeries that correct previous surgeries which have posed problems for the patient. At Bridgepoint Active Healthcare, we’ve created innovative inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation programs that offer remarkable care in the hospital and community through partnership, expert care, practical research and education.
We’ve collected tips from some of our musculoskeletal experts across Sinai Health to help you prevent injury from happening in the first place, as well as tips and considerations before having knee surgery, and getting back on your feet after knee surgery.
Dr. Kim Coros, Physiatrist, Neurologic Rehabilitation Unit at Bridgepoint Active Health
- The most important thing you can do each day to prevent injury and improve your mobility and posture is to get moving.
- Doing exercises correctly is more important than how many times you do them.
- Keep your movements slow and controlled to engage the right muscles and keep the rest of your body stable.
- Once you’ve mastered your form, you can gradually work up to three sets of 10 repetitions for different exercises daily.
Dr. David Backstein, Head of the Granovsky Gluskin Division of Orthopaedics at Mount Sinai Hospital
- If you are older, don’t put knee surgery off too long. Choosing the right time will help you reap the benefits.
- Be sure to pick a surgeon who does a high volume of surgeries and has a lot of experience.
- The better condition you are in before surgery, the faster your recovery will be.
- If you think something is wrong after surgery, don’t be afraid to speak up. Acting fast on your suspicions can catch a small problem before it becomes something bigger.
Usman Khan, Physiotherapist in the Outpatient Musculoskeletal Program in the Christine Sinclair Ambulatory Care Centre at Bridgepoint Active Health.
- After surgery, pain management is a key component of recovery. With optimal pain management, you’ll sleep better, and have a better tolerance for daily activities as well as exercises to further help healing. Be sure to speak to members of your healthcare team (i.e. doctors, nurses, physiotherapists) if your pain level is too high.
- Exercise – in addition to rehabilitation – is very important when it comes to healing. Unless your surgeon has advised you to avoid certain kinds of exercises, you can start with simple movements like sitting and bending, and progressively putting more weight through your operated knee. For most patients, exercise will promote healing and set them up to be in better shape in the long-term.
Read other stories about our experts and the MSK program at Sinai Health System: