For patients undergoing orthopaedic surgery the post-operative physiotherapy protocol that they follow will be critical to the result that they achieve. Often there is an established guideline or protocol for the Physiotherapist to follow if you are having a common surgery such as a hip replacement, knee replacement or ACL reconstruction. Your Physiotherapist should be familiar with this protocol and be able to adjust your program based on your specific circumstances.
Generally speaking post-operative physiotherapy occurs in three phases. The early recovery phase, the strength and range of motion phase and lastly the functional restoration phase.
Physiotherapy in the Early Recovery Phase
This phase begins as soon as you are discharged from surgery and carries on until your tissues have healed, the swelling from surgery has dissipated and the pain associated with the surgery has mostly resolved. During this period of time your Physiotherapist will be focused on the following;
Gentle manual therapy to restore joint range of motion
Assistance with early walking
Prescribing gait aids like walkers or canes and instructing on their use
Simple exercises to begin to regain muscle function without disrupting healing
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