Physical Therapy
Monday, October 5, 2009

There are more than 150,000 licensed physical therapists in the United States. They offer treatments for a variety of medical conditions with the goal of improving or maintaining a patientís quality of life. Dr. Edward Hill explains how in todayís 60 Second Housecall.

Physical therapists help restore function, improve mobility, relieve pain and limit permanent physical disabilities of patients suffering from injuries or disease.

Treatment aims to restore, maintain and promote overall fitness and health. They treat accident victims and individuals with disabling conditions such as low back pain, arthritis, heart disease, bone fractures, head injuries and cerebral palsy.

Physical therapy can help with balance problems, lack of coordination, fatigue, pain, immobility and weakness.

Some physical therapists specialize in certain fields such as pediatrics, geriatrics, orthopedics, sports medicine, neurology or cardiopulmonary physical therapy.

A physical therapist will conduct an initial assessment, observing a patientís posture, muscle strength and flexibility, joint range of motion, balance and coordination, respiration and motor function. The therapist will then develop a plan of treatment.

Treatment may include exercise, manual techniques, soft tissue massage, cryotherapy, heat therapy and electrotherapy. Therapists can also teach patients to use assistive and adaptive devices such as crutches, prostheses and wheelchairs.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Iím Dr. Edward Hill.