Preoperative rehabilitation, prehabilitation or prehab, is a form of healthcare intervention that takes place before a medical or surgical intervention with the aim to reduce side effects and complications, and enhance recovery. Multidisciplinary team involvement can range from physiotherapists, occupational therapists, respiratory therapists, doctors, pharmacologists, anesthesiologists, psychologists, psychiatrists and sports physiologists.
Prehab can be applied to surgical populations in oncology, cardiorespiratory, cardiovascular and orthopaedic settings. The intention is that increasing baseline fitness prior to surgery will allow for relatively higher fitness post-operatively. Prehabilitation interventions are tailored to the patient so that even those with high amounts of comorbidities can receive a positive outcome. Research evidence is mixed, but suggests that prehabilitation reduces hospital stays and therefore risk of hospital acquired infections such as pne