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Pre-surgery exercise advice

This will reduce the size of your liver to ensure the operation can be done by keyhole/laparoscopic surgery. If your liver is too large it will be very difficult for the Surgeon to perform the operation safely. It may be necessary for the operation to be abandoned, or you will have to have an open operation, increasing the risks of surgery and delaying your recovery.

Prehabilitation advice

Our healthy lifestyle team is working together with our medical professionals, exercise specialists, dieticians and physiotherapists to bring you the most professional, effective and up-to-date evidenced-based advice programme of support before your surgery.

Our aim is to address all your medical and lifestyle issues before surgery, as we know this will improve your likelihood of successful surgery.

You have been given this exercise programme of recommended activities, together with an exercise diary as you have been identified as someone who will benefit from these activities.

If you have other mobility issues, e.g. cardiac and respiratory issues, read the leaflet carefully, and please discuss these suggested exercises with our team or your physiotherapist individually.

Please log your activity in the exercise diary you may have been given.  You may also be asked to report your progress to our Enhanced Recovery Nurses on a weekly basis.

The Exercise Plan

This will contain 2 or 3 elements, depending upon your surgery.

1.Use a pedometer to count your daily steps. We advise you walk 10,000 steps every day. However, wherever you start, please log your steps accurately every day in the diary, and work up towards this goal before you come in for surgery.

2.Exercises from our physiotherapy team are designed to improve your muscle strength and aid your post op mobility. Generally we advise you to  repeat these exercises x 10 repetitions, and 1-3 times daily. Then when you are ready progress to using a theraband or light weight.

3.Using the above, or another activity everyday please ensure you get out of breadth with your exertion.  If you are not used to this, you will be advised how to exert yourself safely using the Borg scale of exertion.  On a daily basis please aim your exercise to be ‘somewhat hard’ which is 12-14 on the breathing scale  (see full information).

When you are exercising it is normal to feel:

  • Slightly sweaty
  • Warm or slightly flushed
  • You are breathing deeper and faster, but can still talk
  • Your heart is beating faster.

However, you should slow down and make the movements smaller if:

  • Your breathing is uncomfortable
  • You feel excessively tired or are sweating a lot
  • Your perceived exertion score is higher than recommended

You should also STOP, SITDOWN, and do not resume any other exercise that day if:

  • You feel dizzy
  • You feel chest pain
  • Your heart beat becomes very irregular


Please click on the ‘download’ option to view the full information