What is orthopedic physiotherapy?
This is the branch of physiotherapy that deals with the treatment of injuries or disorders of the skeletal system and associated muscles, joints, and ligaments. Orthopedic physiotherapy also includes pre-and postoperative hip, shoulder, and knee rehabilitation. Orthopedic physiotherapy is a scientific approach to treatment that follows evidence-based guidelines.
Originally, the physiotherapist will carry out a clinical assessment and this will be followed by the appropriate treatments. It is important to get to the source of the problem and prevent it from happening again. The goal of the orthopedic physical therapist’s treatment is to relieve pain, increase joint range, improve strength and flexibility, and restore the patient to full function.
Orthopedic circumstances treated by us at the physio-company include:
- Sprain, sprain, or torn ligament
- Rehabilitation of fractures
- Inflammation of tendons or bursa
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Ankylosing spondylitis
- Surgical reintegration of hip, shoulder, knee, and foot/ankle
Preoperative physical therapy can help to strengthen the patient physically and cardiovascularly. In the case of joint physical therapy, it can help maintain and improve range of motion before surgery and educate the client on their postoperative rehabilitation. This will make it easier for the client to recover from the surgery at a faster rate. After orthopedic surgery, our team of physical therapists will stay in close contact with your surgeon to follow the recommended clinical protocol.
Physiological treatments for orthopedic conditions may include the following:
Manual therapy: This is a carefully graduated system of moving the joints to reduce pain and restore normal joint mobility. Includes mobilization, manipulation, and other related techniques.
Massage techniques: Range from a light pressure relaxing massage to a deep friction massage to break up scar tissue in muscles or ligaments.
Ultrasound therapy: An electrical machine that produces ultrasonic waves that are transmitted to the affected area using a conductive gel. This in turn causes a micro-massage effect that promotes circulation, reduces pain and increases the regenerative capacity of the tissues, and helps muscle relaxation. It is very useful in the treatment of soft tissue injuries.
Interferential therapy: It is an electrical current that is sent to the injured part through 2 or 4 electrodes. It sends two currents of interference to the part of the body that the patient feels like pins and needles. It can be used to relieve pain. Reduce swelling and optimize the healing process.
Neuromuscular stimulation: An electrical machine with variable currents that are applied using electrodes to strengthen very weak muscles. This is very helpful after knee surgery to strengthen the muscles that support the knee. The portable version is now available to rent or buy.
Dry needling: This is a western medical technique and involves the insertion of fine needles into dysfunctional muscles. Dry needling works by changing the way your body feels pain and helping the body heal trigger points. Myofascial trigger points are tender nodules within tight bands of muscle. There are electrical and biochemical changes associated with dry needling that aid in the healing process.
Acupuncture: It is based on traditional Chinese medicine. It involves the insertion of fine needles. It can be used to treat a diversity of conditions. In the area of orthopedic physiotherapy, it is used to reduce pain and normalize movement. Complements other physical therapy treatments.
Taping for joint support/alignment. This will relieve pain and facilitate normal movement.
Rehabilitation exercise program: Home exercises are scientifically designed to aid your posture, improve mobility of the spine and joints, stabilize and strengthen the muscles that support bones. This will be tailor-made and graduated to reach your full potential. This is a critical part of your journey to full health.
The sooner injuries or disorders are addressed, the faster your recovery. We have a wide range of treatment methods used to relieve pain and aid recovery.
What types of treatments are used by orthopedic physiotherapy?
Orthopedic physiotherapists use a wide range of therapeutic modalities, exercises, assistive devices, and patient education methods to help you.
Depending on how your therapist uses these treatments, they can be:
- Inactive modalities (the therapist gives you a treatment), or
- Active modalities (you perform or participate in a movement)
- Below are some examples of treatments that can be used with orthopedic physical therapy
Orthopedic physiotherapists use both cryotherapy (cold therapy) and thermotherapy (heat therapy) to treat musculoskeletal pain and swelling.
In a 2015 study involving 100 patients, both heat and ice helped prevent muscle damage, but cold used immediately after strenuous exercise was more effective in preventing muscle pain.
Your therapist will make an exercise plan that will likely contain strengthening, mobility, or balance-building exercises.
It is a good idea to practice the exercises with your therapist at first to know that you are doing them correctly. Once you know how to do the exercises correctly, you will be encouraged to do them at home on a regular basis to help increase your strength and mobility.
E-stim (TENS or NMES)
There is some evidence that electrical stimulation has the ability to reduce pain.
When a physical therapist uses this treatment modality, the therapist places an electronic stimulation device on the injured area of your body.
There are two main types of electronic stimulation devices. They include:
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) uses low-voltage electrical current to relieve pain. It is believed that the electrical impulses can help block the delivery of pain receptors from the nerves to the brain.
- Neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) uses a device that sends electrical impulses to the nerves. This causes your muscles to contract. Repeated muscle contractions are believed to improve blood flow and help repair injured muscles.
Traction takes the pressure off compressed or injured joints. It can be done with a computer or with the hands of the therapist, and is considered useful for people with:
- Neck pain
- Lumbar pain
- Degenerative disc conditions in the spine
Your therapist can incorporate water therapy into your treatment plan. You can exercise in a pool or hot tub as part of your rehabilitation.
This type of therapy can be especially helpful if you have joint problems or injuries because the water provides gentle resistance. The buoyancy provided by the water helps you stay on while you exercise, reducing the impact you put on your joints.
Soft tissue manipulation
Soft tissue manipulation is a form of manual physical therapy in which the physical therapist uses practical techniques on the muscles, ligaments, and fascia. This is done to break down adhesions and optimize your muscle function.
Although more research is needed to verify the specific effects of soft tissue manipulation, it is generally recommended as a way to reduce pain and decrease muscle tension.
This technique involves a therapist moving the joint firmly and carefully in the desired direction. Like soft tissue handling, it is a manual technique.
In some states, physical therapists may use dry needling, a technique similar to acupuncture.
With this technique, the therapist inserts a fine needle into a specifically targeted muscle with a trigger point, usually, one that is the source of tension or pain.
Laser or light therapy
Orthopedic physiotherapists can use a reliable source of low-level laser or light therapies to increase muscle performance, reduce muscle fatigue, and allow muscle repair after injury.
Kinesiology tape is an extremely flexible tape band made of stretchy fabric. This therapeutic tape, which often comes in bright colors or bold patterns, is applied to specific areas of the body.
Although there is little research to support its effectiveness, anecdotal evidence suggests that kinesiology tape can help:
- Give support
- Reduce pain and inflammation
- Decompress trigger points
- Boost circulation
- Improve lymphatic drainage
- Improve flexibility
Who provides orthopedic physiotherapy?
Orthopedic physiotherapy is performed by a medical professional who is an expert in evaluating and treating injuries and conditions associated with the musculoskeletal system.
What are the conditions that orthopedic physiotherapy treat?
Spondylitis is a condition of inflammation of the vertebral joints and is one of the most common causes of back and neck pain. It is a form of spondylopathy that is often not identified until it has fully developed and causes pain in the vertebrae or spine. Pain caused by spondylitis is usually around the cervical region of the neck, shoulder, and lower spine, and sometimes the pain occurs further down. Therefore, physical therapy, such as stretching exercises and spinal exercises, is recommended to improve back pain and reduce long-term impact.
Arthritis is a swollen and tender condition that occurs in one or more of the joints. It causes pain and stiffness, which worsens with age. There are two most communal types of arthritis: osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Some of the common and possible causes include wear and tear, injury, abnormal metabolism, immune system problems, and heredity, such as osteoarthritis infections. Physical therapy helps patients control pain, minimize joint damage, and improve function and quality of life for patients.
Back pain is one of the most common conditions that everyone will experience in their lives. It is usually due to a sitting posture, frequent leaning forward and heavy lifting, poor lifestyle, and other skeletal irregularities. The best-recommended treatment for back pain is physical therapy, such as stretching and maneuvers that can help patients reduce back pain, improve movement and function of joints and muscles.
Knee pain is a condition classified into three types: acute, subacute, or chronic knee pain. Orthopedic physical therapy for knee pain involves a thorough evaluation and assessment of the area affected by knee pain, that is, from the hip to the foot.
Physiotherapy treatment aims to reduce knee pain, improve overall body mobility, and help you resume normal activities: walking, running, or jogging.
A slipped disc is a condition that refers to a problem associated with rubber discs between the bones of the spine. It occurs when the soft center of a spinal disc pushes through a crack in the stronger outer shell, causing pain, numbness, or weakness in an arm or leg, and irritating nearby nerves.
Regular physical activities like yoga, swimming, walking, and biking, etc. They can help strengthen the muscles that support the spine, reduce pressure, and increase flexibility in the spine.
Muscle sprain is a condition of stretching or tearing of the ligaments, the fibrous tissue that connects the bones and joints. It is due to fatigue, overuse, or improper use of a muscle: walking or exercising on an uneven surface, injury from skiing, and landing on an outstretched hand during a fall. Physical therapy is an effective treatment that reduces pain and helps you recover from a muscle sprain.
What are the benefits of orthopedic physiotherapy?
- Orthopedic physiotherapy eliminates surgery and prevents future complications
- Orthopedic physiotherapy improves body posture and helps restore normal mobility
- Orthopedic physiotherapy strengthens muscles and promotes general physical health well-being
- Orthopedic physiotherapy ensures a quick recovery and helps to return to a healthy state
What do you need to know about orthopedic physiotherapy?
Imagine that you have no muscles, bones, joints, tendons, or ligaments. Physically, I couldn’t do much.
Now imagine what life is like when your muscles, bones, joints, tendons, and ligaments are not fully functional.
It hurts to move. You can’t do what you like. Your life could be defined by:
Orthopedic physiotherapy is a treatment that attentions on improving the function of your orthopedic system – those very significant muscles, bones, joints, tendons, and ligaments.
Orthopedic physiotherapy rehabilitation
- Pre and post-surgical care for all orthopedic conditions
- Balance rehabilitation/vertigo
- Postural training
- Arthritis management
- Back/neck rehabilitation
- Joint pain management
- Headache management
- Manual Therapy / McKenzie Treatment
- Spinal stabilization
- Sprains and sprains of muscles and ligaments
- Myofascial release
- Car accident injuries
- Work injuries