Physiotherapy strengthens your body, helping you return to normal activities sooner. If your injury has left lasting impacts on the way you move and perform daily tasks, physiotherapy will also help you learn how to live life to the best of your capabilities.
The benefits of post-operative physiotherapy include:
· Improved range of motion
· Stronger muscles and supporting structures
· Less pain during and after recovery
· Reduced chances of re-injury
· A faster recovery
The best post-surgical results may be achieved when physiotherapy is started as soon as possible. This depends on a patient’s individual situation and type of surgery however, and should be discussed with your treating surgeon.
In the hospital
Physiotherapy after orthopaedic surgery often begins within 24 hours after the procedure.
After the procedure, your physiotherapist will visit you in your hospital room to begin the process. They will let you know how much you should move your injured body part and how often to do it. If needed, your physiotherapist or another team member will also show you how to use mobility aids like a wheelchair or crutches.
After you go home
The doctor or physiotherapist will usually give you a few exercises to start with at home, and may supply more at your two-week follow-up appointment. At that point, they may refer you for further physiotherapy.
Any physiotherapy in the first 6 weeks will usually focus on preventing stiffness and weakness in the affected area. After this time, the physiotherapist focusses on helping you regain joint and muscle strength. Strength can take many months to recover after an injury or surgery.
For any advice on your recovery process, your first port of call should be your orthopaedic surgeon. They’ll let you know when you should start moving again and give you some simple exercises to do. Your surgeon and their team will also help guide your recovery process when you visit for follow-up appointments after surgery.
After you have left the hospital, you can see a private physiotherapist for ongoing support. Remember to ask your surgeon for a recommendation: since many of our Orthopaedics SA doctors specialise in treating certain injuries and procedures, they know physiotherapists who are skilled in rehabilitating them specifically.
You can also ask friends and family for recommended local physiotherapists. Your GP or another allied health professional may also be able to help.
Before physiotherapy can start, quality orthopaedic care is needed to ensure you receive a thorough assessment and ideal treatment options. Contact Orthopaedics SA to find a surgeon who specialises in treating your condition.