Physical Therapy Joint Rehabilitation

Knee
Physical Therapy is an effective way to decrease knee pain, edema and increase strength, endurance and range of motion. Many different types of knee problems can be aided with physical therapy such as: pre/post surgical arthroscopic procedures, ligament reconstruction and total knee replacements. Non-surgical problems such as patello-femoral pain, arthritis, low grade ligamental injuries and many other knee difficulties can also be helped with PT.

Ankle
The most common ankle injury by far is the inversion ankle sprain. Many other ankle injuries such as fractures, tendonitis and even compartment syndromes can be effectively treated with PT. The management of acute swelling and obtaining active range of motion are often key in effective ankle rehabilitation. The heel is also an area that is often treated in PT. Here, difficulties such as plantar fasciitis, Morton's Neuroma, over pronation and many other problems are dealt with.

Hip
Arthritic changes in the hip joint are probably one of the most common causes of hip pain. Physical Therapy can help improve range of motion and decrease pain in the hip to either delay surgery or improve function. Then, when a total hip replacement is required, PT can be an effective tool both pre and post surgically. Other problems with hips often include trochanteric bursitis, piriformis syndrome (often linked with sciatic-type pain) and tendonitis. The hip can also cause some types of back pain or be mistaken for back pain.

TMJ
(Temporal Mandibular Joint) of the 'jaw' can be extremely painful. Here, patients have difficulty opening/closing their mouths as well as having pain with chewing and talking. The joint itself is contained inside the mouth, so PT here often involves treatment on the face and inside the mouth for mobilizations. Dentists often give patients with TMJ a splint to wear at night to help prevent overuse of the surrounding musculature and grinding of the teeth.

Shoulder
Most shoulder injuries respond well to PT. Rotator cuff tendonitis, tears, and strains are very common. Post-surgical rehabilitation following an arthroscopic surgery or even a rotator cuff repair is commonplace as well. Other injuries such as subluxations/dislocations, frozen shoulders and acromioclavicular separations can be treated with PT. The major areas that require immediate attention in regard to shoulder rehabilitation include controlling edema, pain and maintaining or regaining range of motion.

Elbow
Lateral/Medial epicondylitis' are very common elbow injuries. Often referred to as tennis/golfer's elbow respectively, these are injuries that occur due to overuse, improper technique or even trauma. The use of various modalities and even bracing can be effective in treating these problems. Other injuries including fractures and contusions must be dealt with to control pain and swelling and increase function.

Wrist
Various injuries such as fractures, tendonitis and overuse syndromes are commonplace in regard to the wrist. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is effectively treated both pre and post surgically with PT. CTS is a compression of the median nerve, other tendons, arteries and veins that travel through an area called the carpal tunnel. Difficulty arises when the pressure in this 'tunnel' is increased due to swelling, overuse or trauma. Surgically, the thick band of tissue forming the roof of the tunnel (called the flexor retinaculum) is cut, thus releasing the pressure in the 'tunnel'.

Hand
The hand is a complex, intricate area that can be difficult to properly manage. Here, injuries such as tendonitis, arthritis, and post surgical cases can be effectively treated with PT. Hands that have been exposed to severe trauma often make up the majority of the most difficult cases. Due to the proximity of various structures such as tendons, muscles, bones and ligaments, hand rehabilitation can be challenging but rewarding. The hand is very mobile and is capable many movements. Proper rehabilitation focusing on functioning and the balance of edema and pain control are key.