What is Orthopedic Physical Therapy?
Orthopedic Physical Therapists diagnose, manage, and treat disorders and injuries of the musculoskeletal system including rehabilitation after orthopedic surgery. This specialty of physical therapy is most often found in the outpatient clinical setting. Orthopedic Therapists are trained in the treatment of post-operative orthopedic procedures, fractures, acute sports injuries, arthritis, sprains, strains, back and neck pain, spinal conditions and amputations. Joint and spine mobilization / manipulation, therapeutic exercise, neuromuscular re-education, hot / cold packs, and electrical muscle stimulation (e.g., cryotherapy, iontophoresis, electrotherapy) are modalities often used to expedite recovery in the orthopedic setting. Additionally, an emerging adjunct to diagnosis and treatment is the use of sonography for diagnosis and to guide treatments such as muscle retraining. Those who have suffered injury or disease affecting the muscles, bones, ligaments, or tendons of the body will benefit from assessment by a Physical Therapist specialized in orthopedics.
Orthopedics is “the medical specialty concerned with the preservation, restoration, and development of form and function of the musculoskeletal system, extremities, spine, and associated structures by medical, surgical, and physical methods.”
Orthopedic Physical Therapy focuses on the physical methods of Orthopedics. Orthopedic Physical Therapists diagnose, manage, and treat disorders of the musculoskeletal system, as well as rehabilitate patients after orthopedic surgery. This specialty of physical therapy is often found in the out-patient and private practice clinical setting.
Orthopedic Physical Therapists are trained in the treatment of acute sports injuries, spinal and joint pain and injuries, arthritis and muscle strains, just to name a few.
Joint mobilizations, strength training, soft tissue mobilization, modalities (ultrasound, electric muscle stimulation, hot / cold packs) are some of the many treatment techniques often used to expedite recovery in the orthopedic setting. Those who have suffered injury or disease affecting the muscles, bones, ligaments, or tendons will benefit from assessment by a Physical Therapist specialized in orthopedics.
Rehabilitation for Shoulder Injuries
The therapists at Grayslake Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy & Wellness are ready to treat a variety of problems. Each patient has a different treatment plan depending on type of injury and level of activity. We set specific goals for each patient as we develop our plan of care.
Every patient has a personalized treatment program depending on their diagnosis and their specific weaknesses. General progression of treatment is usually as follows: If a patient has surgery, we follow a surgical protocol approved by their surgeon.
It is important to include a home exercise program including appropriate stretches and strengthening exercises. We work with you as a team to help you reach your goals.
Prevention of a Total Hip or Knee Joint Replacement Surgery
Arthritis is a common reason people require total hip or knee joint replacement surgery later in life. Physical Therapists may be able to help prevent or delay the need for this surgery by teaching individuals specific pain management techniques, exercises, and stretches to decrease pain and improve function. Alternative modalities, such as ultrasound, low level laser, electric stimulation, and taping techniques may also be used to assist with pain management.
At Grayslake Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy & Wellness, our Physical Therapists will perform an evaluation to determine if your pain is due to a muscle imbalance in your leg, joint stiffness, muscle weakness or poor body mechanics. Your Physical Therapist will then tailor a rehabilitation program to fit your specific needs and goals. You will also receive education on how to limit the stress placed on your injured joint to relieve pain.
If a joint replacement surgery cannot be avoided, working with our Physical Therapists at Grayslake Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy & Wellness prior to your surgery will help you maximize your strength prior to surgery and prepare you for what to expect after surgery.
Why is Physical Therapy important after total joint replacement surgery?
A sound exercise program will increase the successful function of your new joint. Inadequate strength or range of motion after surgery may leave people with limited walking ability or residual pain. Progression of flexibility and strengthening exercises must take place according to guidelines determined by the specific procedure that was performed by your doctor. Certain procedures require limitations in how much you will be permitted to bend your leg or how much weight you may place through your leg to allow healing to take place.
At Grayslake Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy & Wellness, your Physical Therapist will prescribe exercises that focus on safely developing the strength of the leg, hip and trunk muscles, in addition to helping you gain optimal flexibility. Neuromuscular control plays an important role in coordinating the activity of the leg muscles for balance. Thus, we add a component of balance training to the rehabilitation program to improve muscle co-ordination and movement patterns. We also aim to limit the effect post-surgical scar tissue has on your ability to move your limb, and correct any muscle imbalances caused by surgery.
At Grayslake Rehabilitation, Physical Therapy & Wellness, our Physical Therapists can help you recover faster and stronger after your total joint surgery. We spend one-on-one time with our patients ensuring that they are doing their exercises correctly. Technique is everything. If you have any questions with regards to our post-op program, please call our office at 847.986.3580.