Rhode Island Monthly 2013 Guide to Health and Wellness : Page 6

[ Your Health. Your Wellness. ›› RecupeRation ] Rec 04 HWg 13 oriented profession. We spend a considerable amount of time studying pathology so we can get to the root cause of an injury, or at least decrease the probability of wors-ening the injury or causing another one.” PT can be used for almost any injury or illness, from infants born with musculoskeletal birth defects to adults suffering from sciatica to elderly post-stroke patients. And when children need PT after an injury, there are many physical therapists that specialize in pediatrics. “It’s better for some situations than others, such as the orthopedic injuries. Those include strained ligaments and tendons, strained muscles, osteoarthritis, rheuma-toid arthritis, structural things like fractures. It’s also used for major neurological diseases,” he explains. For patients, recovery is all about how soon they will be able to do everything they did prior to an injury or surgery. Say you’ve just had a hernia repair or hip replacement, or are recuperating after fracturing your forearm. There have been tremendous advances in therapies to help you recover, and your doctor will guide you to the therapies that will address your individual medical condition and its severity. For example, if you’re the fracture patient, you may only need physical therapy after it heals to regain your range of motion and strength. But if you’re the hip replacement patient, you’ll most likely need both physical therapy and occupational therapy to help you safely resume your activities of daily living (ADLs). The goal of both is to restore you to the best possible function and strength. physical therapy (pt) PT is the art and science of using physical modalities to recover from injury or illness, according to Rob Bouf-fard, P.T., clinical manager for rehabilitation services at the Miriam Hospital. It uses specially designed exercises and equipment to help patients regain or improve their physical abilities. While exercise is a large component, there are others such as heat, electrical stimulation and light that can help. “They keep changing as the science moves along,” Bouffard says. “PT is a medically-based and science-occupational therapy (ot) OT evaluates patients to determine the impact of their injury or disease on their daily activities. Occupational therapists can design and prescribe assistive devices that improve the quality of daily life for patients recuperat-ing from surgery or who are living with chronic diseases such as arthritis or congestive heart failure (CHF). “OT is much more holistic. We look at the patient as a whole and the environment they need to function in including work, leisure activities, being able to get out of bed, cook, clean, all those kinds of things. They may need to relearn how to get in and out of a tub, or how to use a device to get in and out of the tub safely. OT patients may need to learn things like how to rebutton their sweater, or be taught how to adjust the sweater so that they can put it on,” Bouffard explains. Another part of an OT’s job is to assess a patient’s cognitive abilities to ensure they can function safely and optimally in their home environment. One example includes CHF patients who are frequently readmitted. In trying to find methods to get them home healthier and help them stay there, Bouffard called in the OT team. “OT teaches them personal energy conservation, how to budget their energy during the day. They look at the patient’s functional status and may give them some adap-tive devices that help them function at home and use less energy, or make it safer for them, discovering their limits and knowing how far they can | | Continued on page 8 Getting Back to ‘Normal’ 6 Rhode Island Monthly | Guide to Health and Wellness 2013

Previous Page  Next Page

Publication List
Using a screen reader? Click Here