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Texas Orthopedics, Sports & Rehabilitation Associates

Monday, April 4, 2016

Digital Fitness Devices Empowering Patients

Digital fitness devices remain very popular, whether checked via an app on your phone or worn on your wrist. At least one in ten Americans use them to track activity levels, dietary intake, sleep patterns, and much more. This constant and immediate snapshot of your personal health is now being touted as an empowering tool for patients about to undergo orthopedic surgery or start rehabilitation following surgery or an injury.
A recent study by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) suggests that these fitness devices can actually improve clinical outcomes for many orthopedic patients. The more patients are involved in their own health and self-care, the easier it is on the physicians and therapists to do their jobs.
This particular study evaluated 28 of the most popular health devices, named by a top consumer tech magazine, with regard to:
  • activity tracking
  • cost
  • interfaces
  • location of devices on the body
The data generated by these fitness devices can be useful in many different aspects of orthopedic care including:
  • In non-surgical patients, tracking behavior, activity levels, and medical use, and altering these as necessary in order to lose weight and/or maintain the best possible muscle and joint functionality.
  • In pre-operative patients, decreasing the risk for post-operative complications by reducing their weight, preventing diabetes through glucose monitoring, and identifying sleep disorders.
  • Also in post-operative patients, rehabilitation progress can be measured by walking distances, stairs climbed, or other targeted activities.
With patient authorization, this useful data also can be shared directly and rapidly with the other physicians and healthcare providers who are treating them.
Discuss the possibility of implementing a fitness tracker with us during your next visit.
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