Physical Rehabilitation: Restoring Ability and Quality to Lives

Posted on

Oct 27, 2015

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Outpatient rehabilitation begins with a thorough evaluation of the patients condition and needs. During the evaluation, the patients current level of ability is assessed and the desired treatment outcomes are established. Following the evaluation, a rehabilitation therapist determines which treatment methods will achieve the patients rehabilitation goals.Treatment methods may include: hands-on therapy to address joint mobility and deep tissue needs; patient-specific exercise and strength training programs; or pain and swelling management. When necessary, therapists teach patients to use assistive and adaptive devices such as splints, crutches, prostheses and wheelchairs. Therapists also instruct patients in at-home activities that help speed rehabilitation recovery.Most rehabilitation therapists, which include Physical, Occupational and Speech therapist, treat a wide range of physical and neurological disabilities and many specialize in areas such as, geriatrics, orthopedics, sports medicine, oncology, neurological, cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation.

Rehabilitation therapists often consult and practice with a variety of other professionals, including, but not limited to, physicians, dentists, nurses, educators, and social workers.

Outpatient rehabilitation can help treat the following conditions:

Back and neck pain/injury
Balance disorder
Cardiac conditions
Cognitive deficits
Developmental disability
Limb deficiency
Nerve injury/repair
Neuromuscular disease
Orthopedic conditions
Pulmonary conditions
Spinal cord injury
Speaking difficulties
Sports injury
Swallowing difficulties

The goal of physical rehabilitation is to restore each patients personal independence and to help patients achieve the highest level of function specific to their condition.

Editors Note: This article was submitted by Brad Chewakin, PT, CMPT and Kim Duncan, MA, CCC-SLP. They are managers for Adult OP Rehab with Memorial Hospital, part of University of Colorado Health. Brad Chewakin can be reached at 719-365-1835 and Kim Duncan can be reached at 719-365-6543.

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