Activity restrictions general guidelines after surgery

Temporary guidelines (up to 12 weeks after surgery)

The guidelines below will help you know which activities you can do after surgery and those you should avoid.

For weeks one to six:

  • Do not drive for six weeks.
  • Do not lift, push or pull anything weighing more than 10 pounds.
    • For example, do not vacuum, push the lawn mower or snowblower, open or close heavy doors, or change bed sheets.
    • Do light to moderate activities at home, such as light housework and hobbies.
    • Climb stairs only as needed. Try not to climb stairs often. Avoid carrying anything while climbing stairs for at least two weeks.

For weeks seven to 12:

  • Do not lift more than 20 pounds.
  • No rest—no zest. Allow time to rest between activities. Find a quiet time when you can relax. Put your feet up or nap.

Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Care After Heart Transplant, cvs-ah-95405 (1/18)
First Published: 01/06/2013
Last Reviewed: 01/19/2018