Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (Physio)

Who we are

We are a small and friendly team of HPC regulated, Chartered Physiotherapists who provide high quality, evidence-based assessment, treatment and rehabilitation for the Regional Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Service based at the NNUH.

This area of work is highly specialised and our senior therapists act as a resource for other physiotherapists in the region when treating patients closer to home, supervise and train physiotherapists in training posts and teach students from the UEA and other universities on elective placement.

Who we treat

We care for a wide range of patient groups following surgery. These groups include:

  • Breast reconstruction after mastectomy for breast cancer
  • Head and Neck reconstruction for mouth and throat cancer
  • Lymph node dissection
  • Burns
  • Excision of lesions, skin cancers, sarcomas, lipomas
  • Wound management
  • Facial nerve palsy
  • Reconstruction following multiple trauma
  • Hand injuries and conditions

Hand therapy is provided as part of an integrated service with Occupational Therapists. The Hand Therapy Team   provides a service for patients with injuries or conditions affecting the hand, wrist or forearm who have had plastic or orthopaedic hand surgery. Please follow the link for more information.

Most of our referrals are from Consultants although we do accept referrals from G.Ps, therapists in the region who require a specialist opinion and other hospitals.

As physiotherapists we work as part of a multi-disciplinary team and can make referrals to other professionals. Together we will ensure that you get all the support and help you need.

A lot of our patients are undergoing treatment for cancer and we recommend seeking further information, advice and support from the Big C Centre  at the hospital as well as other organisations listed in the links below.

Where we work


The Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery ward is called Coltishall ward  but we will also treat our patients on outlying wards. Our aim is to help you recover quickly after your treatment/surgery, preventing complications of the respiratory and circulatory systems, providing advice, tailored exercise and rehabilitation programmes, walking aids and strategies to help you manage your daily activities.

When you come in to hospital it is always helpful if you or your relatives/friends can bring in any walking aids or equipment that you use at home and a good pair of supportive slippers/footwear.

When you go home we will ensure that any further treatment you need is organised for you. This may be in our Physiotherapy Outpatient Department, a clinic in the Plastics Outpatient Department or by referral to a local hospital, community or GP Physiotherapist.

Sometimes our patients need more rehabilitation before going home and this will be arranged on an individual basis. For those requiring continuing care, we will work closely with you, your family and carers and other members of the multidisciplinary team to arrange suitable sheltered housing, residential or nursing home care.


We have 2 locations for assessment and treatment of Outpatients:

Physiotherapy Department           Plastics Outpatients Department
Outpatients East                             Outpatients West
Level 2                                               Level 2
01603 286990                                 01603 288014

You will be sent a letter or given an appointment card reminding you of your appointment.

  • We expect that if you are unable to attend an appointment, you call us to re-arrange with 48 hours notice where possible.
  • Patients who miss an appointment and do not contact us within 48 hours will be discharged. A new referral from your Consultant or G.P will be required before treatment can be resumed.
  • Appointments in the Plastic Surgery Outpatients area are usually arranged for your convenience to coincide with a clinic or Consultant appointment. Treatment times may vary depending on the running of the clinic.
  • Appointments in the Physiotherapy Department are preferred if you are not attending a clinic or if access to treatment facilities or the gym is required.
  • You should expect to be seen within 15 minutes of your appointment time and should report back to reception if you are waiting longer than this. Treatment sessions are usually booked for 30 minutes although there is flexibility to allow for a tailored treatment programme appropriate for you needs.

What you should expect

Your physiotherapist will introduce themselves to you and explain why they have been asked to assess you. Your informed consent will be obtained prior to any assessment or treatment.

The assessment will involve gathering information about your condition/injury and surgery from you as well as your medical records and other professionals. After this, a physical examination will be carried out. It is often necessary to be able to see the area of the surgery/ the area causing your problem. This may require the removal of dressings or clothing but your dignity and wishes will always be respected. If the gender of your physiotherapist is important to you because of the nature of your condition, please let us know and we will accommodate your wishes where possible.

Your assessment will be discussed with you. Your physiotherapist will help you to understand more about your injury/condition and surgery and work with you to provide a treatment plan which is best for you and your needs.

We will keep you, your consultant and any other professionals involved in your care informed of your progress as needed.

If you are unhappy with your treatment…

Should you have any concerns regarding your care and feel unable to discuss them with your physiotherapist at the time, you should ask to speak to the Team Leader Physiotherapist. Alternatively you may contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service

  Useful links and websites