Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Definition

04 Jun
2017
By Marie

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Physical medicine and rehabilitation (also referred as Physiatry) is related to evaluation, treatment, and medical management and rehabilitation of individuals of all ages and both sexes with neuro-musculoskeletal disorders and associated conditions. The aim of physiatry is to increase and restore lost functional ability and quality of life of those who have been disabled as a result of disease, disorder, or injury.

It helps every individual maximize functional performance and achieve independence and community integration. Various health care specialists work in physical medicine and rehabilitation. A physician who is expert in physical medicine and rehabilitation can be called as a physiatrist. The Physiatrist work with multidisciplinary team including physical therapists, speech language pathologists, neuropsychologists, occupational therapists, dieticians, social workers, and rehabilitation nurses. Rehabilitation engineers, prosthetists, therapeutic recreation therapists, case coordinators, and orthotics are also important team members. The team works together to:

  • Increase function
  • Decrease pain and disability
  • Maximize performance at work, school, office, during recreation and in all other areas of life.

Disorders treated by physical and rehabilitation physicians

  • Arthritis
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Neck and back pain or injury
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Failed back surgeries/syndrome
  • Head injuries
  • Pinched nerves
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Diabetic/peripheral neuropathy
  • Myofascial pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Tendonitis
  • Stroke rehabilitation
  • Shoulder pain
  • Work-related injuries
  • Spine pain
  • Sports-related injuries
  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
  • Neurological disability such as stroke, spinal cord injury
  • Other musculoskeletal disorders

Physiatrist treats disabilities and injuries by nonsurgical means such as:

  • Therapeutic exercise
  • Spinal stimulation
  • Injection procedures
  • Pharmaceutical pain control

Using a multidisciplinary approach, physiatry covers everything from cardiac rehabilitation to pain management. Physiatrists treat the whole patient, not just the symptoms. They help patients understand their condition by sharing their medical knowledge. A variety of treatment methods can be used to eliminate your symptoms. These health care specialists improve the life of millions of people every year.

Psychiatrists evaluate patients within hours of a major disease or injury; they have the satisfaction of coordinating not only their patient’s rehabilitative care but also over time, their community reintegration and back to work. After evaluating a patient’s medical history and obtaining physical examination findings, physiatrists are able to determine the extent of physical and cognitive deficits and also assess the functional implications of a patient’s impairment. Laboratory studies, radiographic imaging, and electrodiagnostic evaluations can be considered to assess the extent of the patient’s impairment.

Specialists in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation are well trained in the assessment and prescription of prosthetic limbs or braces, as well as in the prescription of physical agents such as ice application, massage, superficial and deep heat, etc. Moreover, they are well trained to manage medical complications resulting from abnormalities such as autonomic hyperreflexia, spasticity, and neurogenic bladder. These experts in physical medicine and rehabilitation perform intravenous injections and peripheral nerve blockade in addition to nerve conduction studies and electromyography.

Role of Occupational Therapy in Vocational Rehabilitation

02 Jun
2017
By Marie

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Occupational therapy, a medically oriented rehabilitation profession, has extensive and well-documented experience in developing components of an effective rehabilitation program.

Vocational Therapy

Vocational rehabilitation helps those people who have suffered injury, or disability to return in their professional vocation. It involves a wide range of possible assessments, interventions, and services that are provided by a team of health care specialists. Vocational therapy may include:

  • Individual assessment at home, work, or school
  • Job analysis and workplace evaluation
  • Support for self-management of health situations
  • Workplace modifications
  • Planning goals and intervention
  • Prevention of injury
  • Health advise enhancing functional ability at workplace or home
  • Psychological intervention
  • Career counselling and job placement services
  • Alleviate the medical consequences of a disability or injury

Role of Occupational Therapy in Vocational Rehabilitation

The educational process of occupational therapy involves course work and supervised field experience in human development, basic work-related skills, work simplification techniques, task and activity to promote physical and mental restoration, daily activities, and adaptive equipment. Occupational therapists widen the scope of knowledge and practice in the vocational rehabilitation process to ensure the successful transition from the evaluator phase to the work environment for clients or patients.

Occupational therapy allows people to engage in purposeful activity, including both the interpersonal and environmental dimensions, to prevent or correct disability and obtain maximum performance at the workplace. The therapy is related to the vocational process, are applied through the provision of planned services created to prepare an individual for vocational evaluation, training, and eventual employment, or the highest level of independent function.

The team of occupational therapists works with adults and children of all ages with a range of disability to provide support in their recovery from illness and in overcoming barriers that prevent the pursuit of occupations or activities. These activities belong to one or more life areas such as self-care, leisure, and work.

Occupational therapy includes vocational rehabilitation, which addresses these life areas, involving purposeful interventions that encourage recovery and conquer your weakness to participate in the daily activities of life. Before recommending an intervention to an individual, the occupational therapist will evaluate the functional, psychological, emotional, and physical capacity to complete their employment duties. The physicians collect detailed information about their health, employment, or medical history as well as the current ability with daily job-related tasks. The occupational therapist will visit the house or workplace of an individual (client) to evaluate him/her. This is termed as Vocational evaluation.

Numerous tools and approaches are available to assist occupational therapists in carrying out the best possible assessment of an individual’s vocational circumstance. Individual assessment can be conducted either at home or at their workplace. During the assessment, full attention will be given to an individual’s background, nature of injury or illness, as well as the input of an individual’s employer whose support is essential to determine the success rate.

Principles of Neuropsychological Rehabilitation

02 Jun
2017
By Marie

Principles of Neuropsychological Rehabilitation

Physical medicine and rehabilitation (also referred as Physiatry) is related to evaluation, treatment, and medical management and rehabilitation of individuals of all ages and both sexes with neuro-musculoskeletal disorders and associated conditions. The aim of physiatry is to increase and restore lost functional ability and quality of life of those who have been disabled as a result of disease, disorder, or injury.

It helps every individual maximize functional performance and achieve independence and community integration. Various health care specialists work in physical medicine and rehabilitation. A physician who is expert in physical medicine and rehabilitation can be called as a physiatrist. The Physiatrist work with multidisciplinary team including physical therapists, speech language pathologists, neuropsychologists, occupational therapists, dieticians, social workers, and rehabilitation nurses. Rehabilitation engineers, prosthetists, therapeutic recreation therapists, case coordinators, and orthotics are also important team members. The team works together to:

  • Increase function
  • Decrease pain and disability
  • Maximize performance at work, school, office, during recreation and in all other areas of life.

Disorders treated by physical and rehabilitation physicians

  • Arthritis
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Neck and back pain or injury
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Failed back surgeries/syndrome
  • Head injuries
  • Pinched nerves
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Diabetic/peripheral neuropathy
  • Myofascial pain
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Tendonitis
  • Stroke rehabilitation
  • Shoulder pain
  • Work-related injuries
  • Spine pain
  • Sports-related injuries
  • Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
  • Neurological disability such as stroke, spinal cord injury
  • Other musculoskeletal disorders

Physiatrist treats disabilities and injuries by nonsurgical means such as:

  • Therapeutic exercise
  • Spinal stimulation
  • Injection procedures
  • Pharmaceutical pain control

Using a multidisciplinary approach, physiatry covers everything from cardiac rehabilitation to pain management. Physiatrists treat the whole patient, not just the symptoms. They help patients understand their condition by sharing their medical knowledge. A variety of treatment methods can be used to eliminate your symptoms. These health care specialists improve the life of millions of people every year.

Psychiatrists evaluate patients within hours of a major disease or injury; they have the satisfaction of coordinating not only their patient’s rehabilitative care but also over time, their community reintegration and back to work. After evaluating a patient’s medical history and obtaining physical examination findings, physiatrists are able to determine the extent of physical and cognitive deficits and also assess the functional implications of a patient’s impairment. Laboratory studies, radiographic imaging, and electrodiagnostic evaluations can be considered to assess the extent of the patient’s impairment.

Specialists in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation are well trained in the assessment and prescription of prosthetic limbs or braces, as well as in the prescription of physical agents such as ice application, massage, superficial and deep heat, etc. Moreover, they are well trained to manage medical complications resulting from abnormalities such as autonomic hyperreflexia, spasticity, and neurogenic bladder. These experts in physical medicine and rehabilitation perform intravenous injections and peripheral nerve blockade in addition to nerve conduction studies and electromyography.

Low Vision Rehabilitation Occupational Therapy

02 Jun
2017
By Marie

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Low vision rehabilitation helps you learn how to use adaptive equipment, make sufficient home modifications, and adjust activities to maximize your vision as well as independence. Healthcare specialists will offer resources while your therapy sessions to address:

  • Reading and writing
  • Cooking
  • Lighting and contrast
  • Community activities
  • Glare control
  • Sewing and crafts
  • Mobility
  • Shopping

Low Vision and its Causes

Low vision is a severe condition that interferes with your daily activities, at the same time it’s also allowing some usable vision. There are different health conditions that can cause low vision, including:

  • Cataracts
  • Macular degeneration
  • Glaucoma
  • Diabetic retinopathy

Occupational therapy for people with low vision

People with low vision may have difficulty performing daily activities such as:

  • Cooking
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Dressing
  • Use of buttons in microwave and mobiles

Also Read: Type of Glaucoma and Their Treatment

Low vision can decrease an individual’s functional ability and independence. To restore and maintain the functional abilities through specific interventions is a complex process that requires a collaboration of various health & eye care specialists. Occupational therapists are the important members of this multidisciplinary team. Occupational therapy in low vision rehabilitation increase performance of individuals for specific daily activities by training skills that depends on residual vision such as reading or writing. The team conducts an environmental assessment at home, school, or workplace to provide an environment for patients who are suffering from low vision.

Low vision rehabilitation occupational therapy offers various support programs to help people maintain the quality of life and allow people with low vision to enjoy the good things that life has offered. The aim of support program is to:

  • Support continued participation in leisure activities
  • Increase confidence in social communication
  • Increase confidence when participating in daily activities
  • Help with money management skills
  • Help improve overall quality of life and well-being
  • Enhance ability to use other senses to compensate for vision loss
  • Reduce risk of falls in the home, school, and workplace
  • Increase communication awareness

Occupational therapists assess your home environment, the activities you carry out. The therapist identifies your strength and weakness that prevent you from participating in daily activities. The therapy suggests various strategies and practices that help you use your other senses to compensate vision loss. These strategies may include falls prevention, use of assistive technology, etc.

People with vision loss have some usable vision, but their vision is not sufficient to perform daily activities. The role of occupational therapists is to enable these vision impaired patients to participate in productive activities.

Once you enter into low vision occupational rehabilitation therapy, physicians here will:

  • Evaluate your condition
  • Make you learn how to use adaptive equipment
  • Make you aware of techniques that compensate for low vision
  • Help you retain functional ability and return to independent living