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What activities can I do when recovering from surgery?

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

Your activity is restricted while you recover from surgery. The following are light to moderate activities allowed after discharge:

1. Personal care

  • washing hands, face and hair, brushing teeth
  • showering
  • dressing

2. Household tasks

  • light meal preparation
  • grocery shopping and putting groceries away (avoid heavy lifting, do not carry up stairs)
  • loading and unloading dishwasher, washing machine, and dryer
  • light cleaning -- dusting, straightening up, straightening bed, sweeping, washing dishes, dust mopping
  • ironing, folding laundry

3. Recreational activities

  • reading, board games (cards, checkers, puzzles), needlework (sewing, knitting)
  • computer work
  • golf -- putting and chipping only
  • fishing from boat, bank, or dock
  • slow dancing

4. Social activities

  • Visiting, shopping, or going to a religious service, movie, concert, or sporting event

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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.