Dr Daniel Fleming introduced the Rapid Recovery Technique to Australia and other surgeons who wish to offer their patients the best service have now adopted it.
Based on an article by Texas plastic surgeon Dr John Tebbets, the Rapid Recovery Technique achieves a predictable 24-hour return to normal activities in 90% of patients, with the exception of gym, aerobics, contact sports and lifting heavy objects.
The critical element of the technique is a method of dissection of the implant pocket that aims to reduce blood loss to only 1ml or less per side. If achieved, this reduces post-operative inflammation and therefore pain. A dry operating field is necessary and local anaesthetic is only used for the skin incision, if needed at all. A light general anaesthesia keeps the patient asleep and relaxes the pectoral muscles if necessary. Special instruments and operating techniques are used to dramatically reduce the amount of bleeding, which causes less pain and therefore less medication is needed. This also contributes to a quicker recovery as painkillers stronger than paracetamol can cause side effects.
Dr Fleming has used this technique for many years on thousands of patients who have experienced a significant reduction in blood loss and a substantial reduction in recovery time. While no patients can be promised a 24 hour recovery time, many experience this and a typical patient can go shopping, out to dinner, or drive a car within 48 hours. Additionally, we have surveyed our patients and approximately 50% only need paracetamol to manage any discomfort.
If you wish to hear from our patients about their experience with the Rapid Recovery Technique you can see the interviews here.
Here is a breakdown of how the traditional recovery technique compares to the Rapid Recovery Technique
|Traditional Recovery Technique
||Rapid Recovery Technique
|Take at least a week off work – longer if your job involves physical activity
||Patients can often return to non-manual jobs within a few days
|Take it very easy for the first few days
||You can return to your normal routine after 24 hours with the exception of gym, aerobics, contact sports and lifting heavy objects
|Expect to have significant pain
||Expect the sensation of tightness in the chest area. Any pain is often only mild in nature
|Strong pain killers and muscle relaxants will be provided to manage discomfort
||In 50% of patients, mild painkillers such as paracetamol are needed to manage discomfort
|Don’t raise your hands above your head in the first week
||You can, and should, raise your hands above your head before you leave the hospital
|Don’t drive a car for a week
||You may drive after 24 hours if you feel up to it. 50% of patients will drive after 24 hours
|Avoid physical exercise for six weeks
||Moderate physical exercise not involving the chest area is okay after two weeks
|Drains are often needed for the first 48 hours
||Drains are rarely needed
|Wear a special bra or bandages ‘to keep the implants in place’
||No special bras, bandages or surgical garments are required