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What activities should I avoid when recovering from surgery?

Daniel P. O'Hair, MD
Thoracic Surgery (Cardiothoracic Vascular)

Avoid these heavy activities that require effort for eight weeks after surgery unless your doctor OKs them:

1. Household tasks

  • scrubbing floors on hands and knees
  • mopping the floor
  • vacuuming
  • moving or pushing furniture
  • changing bed sheets

2. Yard work and home repairs

  • cutting the grass with a power mower
  • riding a lawn mower
  • snow removal and snow blower
  • raking, spading, hoeing
  • pulling a garden hose
  • carpentry or construction
  • painting large areas
  • climbing a ladder
  • changing storm windows and screens
  • chopping wood or splitting logs
  • heavier cleaning activities such as clearing out the garage

3. Recreational activities

  • golf, tennis, bowling
  • volleyball, basketball, football
  • vigorous dancing
  • hiking, swimming, horseback riding, hunting

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.