Post Surgery Rehab

Have an upcoming foot, leg or hip surgery? Then you may already know that the way you approach your recovery can have significant impacts on everything from your post-surgical pain levels to your downtime - and even the outcomes of your procedure. That’s why our Brisbane podiatrists have a strong focus on optimising a person’s recovery and rehabilitation after surgery using evidence-based treatments.

Why Is Post Surgery Rehabilitation Necessary?

Surgery is an invasive procedure, typically cutting through the skin layers, potential tissue layers, and working on muscles, ligaments, bones or other features (such as a cyst removal). This is not something to be taken lightly - surgery is always very impactful on the body and there’s a large demand on the body after the procedure to help with healing, repair and recovery. On top of this, the period immediately following surgery often involves some rest and immobility, which is very often associated with a loss of flexibility, strength and functional capacity - which needs to be addressed efficiently and effectively. Finally, research in recent years has disproved the need for excessive rest following surgery, instead showing that movement and rehabilitation is what is actually required to achieve superior recovery outcomes.

Common Surgical Procedures We Help Clients Recover From

Our podiatrists often work with those recovering from:

  • Knee ligament repairs
  • Knee replacements
  • Hip replacements or other hip surgery
  • Achilles tendon repair
  • Bunion surgery
  • Removal of cysts, accessory bones or other foreign bodies
  • Surgery for charcot foot
  • Partial amputations
  • Hammertoe surgery
  • Stress fractures and acute foot and ankle fractures
  • Fibular and tibial fractures
  • Metatarsal surgery including 5th met fractures
  • Lisfranc and other midfoot surgical operations
  • Ankle replacement, fusion or triple arthrodesis
  • Plantar fascia surgery
  • Morton's neuroma surgery
  • Ankle ligament repair operations

How Does Our Post Surgery Rehabilitation Process Work?

The post-surgery rehabilitation process involves a personalised and progressive treatment plan tailored to each patient's specific needs and surgical procedure, and the stage of healing and repair that you’re at. It’s important to get the right balance of rest with movement, and avoid overdoing it early on, which is why rehabilitation starts with a gentle regimen and increases in intensity as you regain your functional capacity. Your rehabilitation may involve:

  • Pain management using MLS laser: the MLS laser is a proven, painless and safe way to help reduce or relieve pain while reducing inflammation, promoting wound healing and supporting soft tissue repair. As such, it’s a perfect component in rehabilitation after surgery.
  • Range of motion exercises: gentle and controlled exercises are often prescribed to help restore joint mobility and flexibility.
  • Strengthening exercises: progressive strengthening exercises are implemented to rebuild muscle strength and improve stability around the surgical area - and extending to all the affected muscles. We give careful consideration to the other effects on the body too - surgery on one leg can lead to significant strains and demands on the other that has to bear much more weight throughout the recovery period.
  • Foot mobilisation therapy: this is a hands-on treatment that involves gently manipulating the joints around the foot and ankle to help relieve pain and improve movement and function. 
  • Gait training: once you’ve made notable progress on your recovery, we can help you with gait retraining to optimise your walking patterns and improve overall gait mechanics.
  • Orthotics, braces and ankle-foot orthoses (AFOs): in some cases, you may require the support of custom foot orthotics, braces like the EXO-L, or AFOs to best support your recovery and gait. We offer a wide range of custom devices, made to precision using our 3D scanning technology.
  • Footwear modifications: we’re proud to be able to offer a range of footwear modifications that enable your current shoes to best support you both throughout your recovery, and long after that, depending on the nature of your surgery. You can see our full list of modifications here.

How Long After Surgery Do You Start Rehab?

The best timing for starting post-surgical rehabilitation can vary depending on the specific surgical procedure and your overall health and healing progress. In some cases, rehabilitation may begin immediately after surgery, while in others, there may be a delay of a few days or weeks to allow initial wound healing and reduce postoperative swelling. This is something that will be discussed both with your surgeon, and with our podiatry team, following the evidence-based guidelines for best surgical outcomes for your specific procedure.

What Are The Benefits Of Post Surgical Rehab?

Post-surgical rehabilitation offers numerous benefits for patients, including:

  • Improved healing and recovery: rehabilitation helps optimise the healing process by promoting proper tissue alignment, reducing scar tissue formation, and enhancing blood circulation to the surgical site.
  • Pain management: rehabilitation techniques can help alleviate post-operative pain and discomfort.
  • Restored range of motion: targeted exercises and stretching techniques help regain joint mobility and flexibility, preventing stiffness and contractures.
  • Rebuilt strength and stability: progressive strengthening exercises facilitate the rebuilding of muscle strength, endurance, and stability, reducing the risk of re-injury and enhancing overall functional capacity.
  • Improved functional abilities: through targeted rehabilitation, patients can regain or improve their ability to perform daily activities, such as walking, climbing stairs, or participating in sports or recreational activities.
  • Enhanced quality of life: by restoring mobility, reducing pain, and improving independence, post-surgical rehab can significantly enhance a patient's overall quality of life, allowing them to return to their desired level of activity and participation in daily life.

Visit one of our Brisbane Podiatry clinics

If you would like to talk to one of our team, visit us at one of two Brisbane based locations, CBD & Newmarket.


Monday 7:30am - 6:30pm
Tuesday 7:30am - 6:00pm
Wednesday 7:30am - 6:30pm
7:30am - 6:00pm
Saturday CLOSED

Ground Floor, 344 Queen Street,
Brisbane City QLD 4000



Monday 7:30am - 6:00pm
Tuesday 7:30am - 6:00pm
Wednesday 7:30am - 6:00pm
7:30am - 6:30pm
Friday 7:30am - 5:30pm
Saturday 7:30am - 4:30pm

Newmarket Village, 114/400 Newmarket Rd, Newmarket QLD 4051