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Limb reconstruction physiotherapy

Physiotherapy is a key part of what happens after your surgery. Physiotherapy will start the first day after surgery and will continue on a daily basis throughout your treatment.

What do I need to do?

During your stay on the ward you will need to complete these tasks with the therapist and on your own with your parents. These include:

  • Exercises 3 times a day at a minimum
  • Walking
  • A stair assessment
  • Prone lying (lying on your tummy)
  • Assessment and treatment by an occupational therapist if needed

You will need to complete all these tasks to a good standard before you will be allowed to go home.

We expect you to try as hard as you can with all the tasks, we give you. This includes exercises, walking, stairs, and time on your tummy.

The more you can do yourself the quicker you will go home. It is very important you tell us how you are feeling so we can support and help you in what ever way we can.

What will my therapists do?

As therapists we will aim to see you 2 times a day where we will work towards completing all the tasks listed above. We will help you with a walking aid if needed and an exercise sheet with all the exercises you need to do in hospital and initially at home.

We do not expect you do to all the tasks on your own to start with and will support you where necessary, reducing the level of assistance we provide as you get better and stronger. We are always happy to answer any questions you have in relation to therapy so please always ask.

What can my parents and carers do to help?

Parents and carers play a key role in continuing with physiotherapy both in hospital and at home. The key is to promote your child to be as independent as possible.

It is important that you support and encourage your child with their therapy. We know that it can be challenging to motivate or that pain may be an issue. It is important to persevere because if your child does not continue with their therapy, the whole process will take longer, they will be less independent, and they may have to be re-admitted for further therapy.

Pain relief

You will be in some discomfort or pain after your surgery and during the process of correction or lengthening. It is important that you take enough pain relief so that you are able to continue to follow your therapy program and complete daily activities.

This is important not just on the ward when the medical professionals are around but also when you go home. The hard work continues at home so you need to know how to manage your pain effectively. You can discuss this with the pain team on the ward and when you return to clinic or your GP when you are at home.

What happens next?

When you are discharged from the ward we will contact your local therapist to let them know how you have done and what to continue to work on at home. It is important that you see your physiotherapist at home on a regular basis to help you continue with all your exercises and especially your walking. If you keep going with the exercises, soon you should be walking as you were before your operation.

You can go back to many activities and sports but you cannot do any contact sports while the frames are on or for a period of time once they are removed. If you have any particular interests please discuss these with your therapist to find out if you are able to continue them or not during treatment.

It is important to try and be as independent as possible. If you do not keep up with the programme and your daily walking, you may have to come back into hospital for intensive therapy.

Understanding roles

I have listened and read and understand my role:

Parent and carer:



Contact us

Physiotherapy orthopaedics telephone: 0114 226 7837

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Please note: this is a generic information sheet relating to care at Sheffield Children’s NHS FT. These details may not reflect treatment at other hospitals. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professionals’ instructions. If this resource relates to medicines, please read it alongside the medicine manufacturer’s patient information leaflet. If this information has been translated into another language from English, efforts have been made to maintain accuracy, but there may still be some translation errors. If you are unsure about any of the guidance in this resource or have specific questions about how it relates to your child, always ask your healthcare professional for further advice.

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