Monday, October 3, 2011

Ask Us Anything: When Can I Exercise After Pregnancy?

"4 weeks after my son was born, I began running and biking again. Now, after 2 weeks, I notice that I have pain in both knees. I can't run or walk, especially going downstairs, without feeling intense pain. Is this common in pregnant women? I experienced the same knee pain after the birth of my daughter three years ago."

Dr. Ali Ghomi Responds:

It seems that your knee pain might be a case of sports-related injury. It usually takes longer than 2 weeks for one to return to pre-pregnancy body weight. The degree of strain on the knees therefore would be heightened in postpartum period during exercising.

In addition, the joints and ligaments become very flexible in pregnancy as a result of secretion of a hormone (Relaxin) to allow for joint expansion. It may take longer than a few weeks for the joints to return to their pre-pregnancy state and to safely stand strenuous activity.

I would recommend resuming weight-bearing physical activity very gradually to avoid sports-related injury to the joints and ligaments in postpartum period.

— Dr. Ali Ghomi

Dr. Ghomi is the Director of Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery and Chair of The Robotic Surgical Committee at Sisters of Charity Hospital. He is the only physician in Western New York who performs Sacrocolpopexy Prolapse surgery using the da Vinci® robot. Sacrocolpopexy is a proven “gold standard” procedure worldwide to repair severe pelvic prolapse. Click here to learn more about Catholic Health's OBGYN services.

If you have a question about your health, click here to ask our experts.

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