Understanding The Importance Of Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy

Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy is a “manual” or “hands-on” treatment provided by the physical therapist. Treatment may include muscle stretching, passive movements of the affected body part, joint mobilization and manipulation or to make patient move the body part against the therapist’s resistance to improve muscle activation and timing.

• Conditions Treated By Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy

Orthopedic manual physical therapists treat acute and chronic conditions in body regions such as neck, back, head, arms and legs. It helps in treatment of neuro-musculoskeletal disorder, an exercise and movement re-education program may be all that is needed to restore full pain free movement, function, and retain full activity. But, in some cases, soft-tissue and joint restrictions are unavoidable, which might result in these same exercises or movements being painful or even making the condition worse. In such instances, an OMPT therapist can provide hands on techniques to enhance mobility, reduce pain, and restore normal function of the soft tissues and joints.  


• Difference between Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy and Other Forms of Bodywork

At a glance there may be a lot of resemblance between OMPT and other types of bodywork such as chiropractic, massage, or osteopathic therapies. But the key differences are in the assessment process behind the treatment and the integration of OMPT and a patient’s tailored exercise program. All OMPT is based upon a careful examination of the patient’s movement patterns, which involves not only restrictions of mobility but also abnormal compensatory movements that are preventing a condition from improving. A person’s response to OMPT in many cases provides guidance to both patient and physical therapist about how the condition can be improved independently by the patient.

• The Need for Orthopedic Manual Physical Therapy

It is recommended to look for an orthopedic manual physical therapist if you have muscle, joint or soft tissue conditions that affect movement, posture, strength, or cause pain. This not only comprise of  common disorders associated with trauma, poor posture, overuse, obesity, arthritis, athletic injuries, post-operative recovery, or congenital conditions, but also disability associated with conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, cerebral palsy, spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis,  diabetes, heart disease, cancer, or balance disorders. Patients suffering from chronic conditions can benefit from skilled manual therapist intervention with the aim of attaining optimal health, returning to optimal activity, and minimizing disability associated with disease evolution.


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