Here at UBE Physical Therapy, we work with many patients of varying deficits and limitations. One of the most frequent cases that we receive are patients with back pain.
We have many patients that have come into physical therapy with the immediate want for an image and a concrete diagnosis. While understanding what is wrong and a proper diagnosis is important, there are many times in which imaging may cause more harm than good.
Just because a patient has a “degeneration” reading on an MRI, does not make their presentation a cookie-cutter “back patient”. As shown in the resource below, there is a very high percentage of healthy individuals who have signs of degeneration noted on an MRI. Your physical therapists (and medical professionals in general) should be mindful to focus on the patient, and not just a diagnosis or image reading.
Imaging, and specifically MRIs are not the enemy. Imaging is an appropriate tool used for certain injuries and pathologies. However, it is important to keep in mind, an MRI can show more than the clinical presentation. On the flip side, a patient can have significant pain, receive an image, and be told there is nothing wrong.
Your UBE physical therapist will treat you and your clinical presentation. If you have any questions about training or physical therapy, contact UBE via phone: (207) 992-4000 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
There are countless reasons for a patient to come to physical therapy, as well as countless benefits of physical therapy.
At the start of your physical therapy journey, your therapist will develop a “plan of care” at your first session with your personal goals in mind. That plan of care will include how many visits they think will be beneficial to come per week, as well as, duration to reach your goals.
If a patient misses their scheduled appointment, that causes a prolonged time for possible disability/limitations, as well as, a longer period it will take for you to reach your goals.
By missing treatment visits, your therapy will be longer than previously stated during your initial evaluation. This causes an increased time that you have to manage your pain and limitations. While our therapists love to see their patients, they want therapy to be as successful and efficient as possible.
Some benefits of physical therapy include:
1. Decreasing Pain: Pain can severely impact your quality of life. Your UBE physical therapist is trained in hands-on techniques and will instruct you on pain education to reduce pain levels.
2. Avoid Surgery and Opioids: evidence has shown that PT is an effective alternative to both surgery and medication. (http://www.moveforwardpt.com/benefits/default.aspx)
3. Take Full Advantage of Movement: pain-free movement is crucial to high quality of life no matter your age or activity level.
Although November is upon us, there are still plenty of upcoming area races to compete in before (and maybe after) the snow flies! UBE’s Katy Wellman, PT, DPT, demonstrates a few key stretches to help with your post-race recovery.
Complete each stretch below two times, holding for 30-45 seconds per side.
Piriformis stretch: Due to infrequency of lateral movements, the piriformis (located deep in the lateral buttocks) muscle frequently becomes tight.
Calf stretch: With the constant heel-toe movement of running, the calf can become very tight.
Tensor fasciae latae (TFL): the TFL is a frequent culprit of tightness in the hip all the way down the knee due to the TFL continuing into the iliotibial tract (ITB).