Post-operative rehabilitation is a progressive process, and can take long time from months up to a year. The recovery period is different as per the type of surgery; like the rehabilitation usually takes time for shoulder surgery, knee surgery, etc.
The most important rule of post-surgical
rehabilitation is performing right exercises with correct amount and time.
In order to heal the body and for speedy recovery after an operation, physical therapist form treatment plans as per the type of surgery the patient underwent. While surgeons do diagnosis and fix the injuries; physical therapists work towards improvement of functions after surgery.
Post-operative physical therapy comprises of separate stages. The first stage is implemented immediately after surgery when the limb is immobilized and the pain and swelling begins reducing. Then a sequence of progressive exercises is started for improving motion, function and stability. And the last objective is returning the patient to pre-injury activity level.
For effective treatment, a physical therapist always considers pre-op fitness condition and post-op goals. Physical therapy is a collaborative relationship and patients are actively engaged in recovery. In some cases, patients learn the exercises and do them on their own, while in others they may require passive treatments including ultrasound, manual massage, and cold & hot therapies.