Benefits of Early Ambulation: A Literature Review
Sawyers, Allison M., 1996--
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The purpose of this literature review is to examine the benefits of early ambulation and the barriers that prevent early ambulation. Additionally, the literature was reviewed to determine the nursing implications related to early ambulation. Early ambulation is a technique that is used postoperatively to engage a patient in mild to moderate physical activity (Early Ambulation, n.d.). All articles were gathered using the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) Complete database. Seven articles were selected based on the following criteria: written in English, peer reviewed articles, and published within the last five years. The review of literature showed that early ambulation leads to shorter hospital stays, lower hospital costs, and fewer postoperative complications. In addition, strategies to overcome the barriers associated with early ambulation were highlighted. Successful implementation of ambulation programs starts with the nursing staff. Nurses are required to educate patients on ambulation, collaborate with other health care professionals, and implement ambulation protocols.