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Post-operative rehabilitation is an important process that takes place after surgery in order to help restore joint and muscle range of motion, muscle strength and endurance as well as cardiovascular strength and endurance, and overall function.


The success of many operative procedures relies heavily on the rehabilitation you receive after you have an operation. Compliance to this rehabilitation is essential as non-compliance will result in post-operative complications such as joint stiffness, loss of muscle strength and loss of function.


Benefits of post-operative rehabilitation:

  • Prevents and addresses post-operative complications.
  • Aids in healing.
  • Assists with pain management.
  • Assists with swelling management.
  • Assists with scar formation.
  • Restores joint and muscle range of motion.
  • Restores and improves muscle strength.
  • Restores and improves cardiovascular fitness.
  • Restores and improves balance.
  • Allows you to return to your highest functional level, including return to sport.

What can I expect for my post-operative rehabilitation?


Your physiotherapist and/or biokineticist will perform a full subjective and objective assessment to determine what treatment you will need. Based on the results, your physiotherapist will use some of the following treatment techniques as part of your rehabilitation:


  • Soft tissue release.
  • Joint mobilisation.
  • Scar massage.
  • Dry needling.
  • Taping.
  • Electrotherapy modalities.
  • Shockwave therapy.
  • Neural glides.
  • Range of motion, stretching, strengthening and balance exercises.
  • Breathing exercises.

Your Biokineticist will use some of the following techniques as part of your rehabilitation:

  • Range of motion, stretching, strengthening, cardiovascular and balance exercises. These will progress based on your level of function, every day demands, activities and sport.
  • Cybex testing and exercises.

What does the research say?


A study performed in 2017 (Monaghan, et al., 2017) showed that patients who undertake a physiotherapy-led functional exercise programme between 12 and 18 weeks after total hip replacement gain significant functional improvement compared with patients receiving usual care.A study performed in 2016(Vavro, Ziakova, & Gazdikova, 2016) showed that early post-operative physiotherapy treatment positively affects patients’ general condition. It also improves muscle strength, range of motion of the operated joint, eliminates post-operative pain and reduces swelling that improves patients’ self-sufficiency