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Pre and Post-Operative Rehabilitation

knee rehabilitation
Lumbar spinal x-ray

In most injuries which require a surgical intervention, the operation is just the first half, and rehabilitation is the second half

There are three main aspects of Rehabilitation which we focus on here at Sports and Functional Physio:


1. Optimal Healing of the surgically repaired Tissue:

Post-operatively, we want to ensure optimal healing of the repaired tissue. Take for example a surgical repair of a completely torn rotator cuff tendon. Surgically they will tie up the torn tendon - however to encourage full healing of the surgically repaired site, it must be exposed to some modified load during rehabilitation.


Similar to when you perform any kind of exercise (lifting weights for example), the body must adapt to the load in which it's been exposed to, therefore signaling to your muscles and connective tissue to become stronger and more resilient. This is exactly the idea of post-operative rehabilitation. If all that was needed was for the injured area to be operated on, we wouldn't need physios and rehabilitation. Unfortunately that's not the case.


Most of the time we need to promote further tissue healing by exposing the repaired/operated area to a load in which the body says, "hey, we better grow back and repair optimally here". And that's what post-operative rehabilitation is all about - exposing the tissue to a load in which it must adapt to and get stronger, rather than just repairing and regenerating with weaker tissue post-operatively and potentially increasing the risk of re-injury. 

That's what we aim to perfect here at Sports and Functional Physiotherapy. We want to ensure that you have a full recovery after your surgery so that you don't end up back at the surgeons office!


2. Re-conditioning:

 It has been consistently demonstrated that surgery creates a number of secondary impairments. Take an ACL for example, the graft might be really strong and resilient post-operatively, however the surrounding musculature will have de-conditioned, your ability to land and absorb force is likely to be affected, your running mechanics are likely to be impaired.  These impairments unfortunately are part and parcel with most surgeries. This is another key aspect of post-surgical rehabilitation we aim to perfect. We need to address these secondary impairments that are often a result of surgical intervention. It's been consistently demonstrated that addressing these impairments significantly enhances outcomes post-operatively, hence our focus on this aspect of rehab at Sports and Functional Physio. 

3. Prevention

The above two mentioned aspects of post-operative rehabilitation all contribute to the prevention of re-injury post surgery. The third aspect ties it all together and ends with prevention. What's the point of putting a lot of time, effort (and money) into a surgery and it's rehabilitation, all to undo it without ensuring some aspect of prevention is put in place. We're not saying you have to continue seeing forever. It might be that there is one or two things that may have contributed to the initial injury which need to be addressed. Again, this is what we try to optimize here at Sports and Functional. Although we love seeing all our wonderful patients, the goal of physio is to never have to see you again! And that's what we aim for. 

So don't settle for sub-optimal rehabilitation after your surgery. Get your rehab right and make sure you have a full recovery with our rehabilitation here at Sports and Functional Physiotherapy. 

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