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Blog — Physical Therapy RSS

Soft Tissue Releases, Strengthening & Biomechanics

Patients with hip pathology In this excerpt from his discussion at OPTA 2016, Dr. Tony Rocklin reviews soft tissue releases, strengthening, and biomechanics as part of conservative treatment of intra-articular hip pathology. He also discusses his approach to starting new patients on therapeutic exercises and giving them the "tools" to participate in improving their own condition – and explains how positive reinforcement of small improvements can keep them engaged. Tony also covers the importance of educating new patients on pain and setting expectations on the results they can expect from their course of treatment. Watch this final segment below and see previous installments here. Conservative treatment that isn't "drug-centric" Dr. Rocklin is a leading advocate for conservative treatment that isn't...

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Moving Towards Physical Therapy and Pre-habilitation as Standard Management for Hip OA

Changes in our healthcare system come slowly Nothing changes quickly in our healthcare system; change is a marathon, not a sprint. Now that we've finally recognized the opioid epidemic, individual states are taking steps to stem their overuse. Patients with chronic pain – and their doctors – are looking for other ways to deal with their pain, and one of those ways is physical therapy. In fact, one of the most common sources of chronic pain is hip osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease that strikes more than 1 out of every 5 Americans. But not many primary care doctors are aware that physical therapy can relieve the pain and other symptoms of hip OA – before surgery becomes an option. And...

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Predicting Patient Response to Physical Therapy for Hip Osteoarthritis

Physical Therapy Helps Many Physical therapists who work with patients diagnosed with hip osteoarthritis know that education, manual therapy and therapeutic exercise can provide significant pain relief and improvements in ROM for many of them. However, there hasn't been sufficient research into the factors that can predict which patients will respond and by how much, when attending physical therapy. This is important because hip osteoarthritis is one of the most common causes of chronic pain, and chronic pain has often (too often!) been treated with opioids and NSAIDs, rather than physical therapy. As the healthcare system evaluates "pre-habilitation" "“ physical therapy before surgery in place of opioids "“ knowing who will benefit most would speed the process. Predicting Patient Response...

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What to Expect When Starting Therapy for Hip OA

Starting Conservative Treatment for Hip OA with Physical Therapy For the conservative treatment of hip osteoarthritis to be effective, it must include some level of education, manual therapy, and therapeutic exercise. While over-the-counter(OTC) and prescription painkillers may relieve pain, they do nothing to counteract the progressive tightening of the joint capsule and decreasing range of motion(ROM). This is why physical therapy is so important in the management of hip OA, as it can both relieve the pain and improve mobility, by mobilizing the joint capsule in the hip and relaxing the muscles around it. This reduces patients' need for drugs and improves their ability to move and exercise. That in turn decreases the possibility of other co-morbidities which often accompany...

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Dr. Tony Rocklin on Physical Therapy to Treat Hip Osteoarthritis

There is no cure for osteoarthritis, so why bother? No, you can't cure hip osteoarthritis. But yes, physical therapy can treat the secondary effects, including pain, tightness of the muscles around the hip joint, and increasing loss of mobility-related to the progressive tightening of the joint capsule. Physical therapy as conservative therapy has a low profile, and many providers "including surgeons and primary care physicians" don't realize that it can significantly reduce patients' need for drugs and also increase their mobility and tolerance for exercise. This, in turn, decreases the risk of other co-morbidities related to inactivity which often accompany the direct pain and symptoms of hip osteoarthritis. Here's Dr. Tony Rocklin, a longtime proponent of pre-surgical conservative treatment, talking...

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