What you need to know about Orthopaedic physiotherapy

This is the branch of physiotherapy concerned with the treatment of injuries or disorders of the skeletal system and associated soft tissues.

Orthopaedic Physiotherapy also includes pre and post-operative rehabilitation of the joints. Initially, the physiotherapist will carry out a clinical assessment and this is followed by appropriate treatments.

It is important to get to the source of the problem and prevent a re-occurrence. The treatment goal of the orthopaedic physiotherapist is to provide pain relief, increase joint range, improve strength and flexibility and restore the patient to full function, depending on the type and level of injury.

Orthopaedic conditions treated by physios at PCA include:

• Ligament Strain, Sprain or tear
• Fracture Rehabilitation
• Inflammation of tendons or Bursa
• Osteo -Arthritis
• Rheumatoid – Arthritis
• Osteoporosis
• Anklyosing Spondylitis
• Scoliosis
• Spondylolisthesis
• Spondylolysis
• Pre and post Surgical Rehabilitation of the joints.

Pre-operative physiotherapy can help to strengthen a patient physically, psychologically and also with cardiovascular endurance. In the case of a joint, physiotherapy can help maintain and improve range of movement prior to surgery and educate the client on their post-operative rehabilitation. This will facilitate the client to recover from surgery at a faster rate.

Physio treatments of orthopaedic conditions can include the following:

  • Manual therapy: This is a carefully graded system of moving the joints to reduce pain and restore normal mobility of the joints. It includes mobilisation, manipulation and other related techniques.
  • Massage Techniques: These vary from relaxing light pressure massage to deep frictional massage to break down scar tissue in muscle or ligaments.
  • Ultrasound Therapy: An electrical machine which produces ultrasonic waves which are transmitted into the affected area using conducting gel. This, in turn, causes a micro-massage effect which promotes circulation, reduces pain and increases regenerative powers of tissues and helps muscle relaxation. It is very helpful in the treatment of soft tissue injuries.
  • Interferential Therapy: This is an electrical current delivered to the injured part via 2 or 4 electrodes. It sends two interfering currents into the body part which feels to the patient like pins and needles. It can be used to relieve pain. reduce swelling and optimise the healing process.
  • Neuromuscular Stimulation: An electrical machine with variable currents which is applied using electrodes to strengthen very weak muscles. This is very useful following knee surgery to strengthen the muscles that support the knee. Portable version are 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 by helping the body heal trigger points. Myofascial trigger points are tender nodules within taut bands of muscle. There are electrical and biochemical changes associated with dry needling that assist in the healing process.
  • Taping for joint support/alignment. This will ease pain and facilitate normal movement.
  • Programme of Rehabilitation Exercises: Home Exercises are scientifically designed to help your posture, improve the mobility of your spine and joints, stabilise and strengthen the muscles that support your bones. This will be tailor-made and graded so you will reach your full potential. This is a critical part of your journey to return to full health.

    The earlier injuries or disorders are addressed the quicker your recovery will be. Physio Centers of Africa have a wide range of treatment methods used to alleviate pain and help recovery.

If you have any issues you need treating then contact us today!

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