Value 2 – Unique Treatment Plans
In today’s blog we explore the second of our four values, “Unique treatment plans”. I see this phrase as having two sides, like a coin.
On the one hand, it captures our desire to create a partnership with each patient to find the “right” recipe for their rehabilitation – hence each treatment plan is unique to each patient.
On the other hand I think the treatment options available at Alliance Physical Therapy are unique in the region. The ability for patients to receive spinal manipulation, dry needling as well as traditional physical therapy exercises and modalities under one roof represents a unique experience for patients in greater Portland.
Unique to each patient
Although many patients arrive with the “same” diagnoses’ of back pain, knee pain or tennis elbow, physical therapists instinctively understand that while there are patterns to these pathologies, no two patients are exactly the same.
Same diagnosis but different causes. While one patient has back pain because their hips are too tight, another may have back pain because they have poor posture or a specific injury.
Same diagnosis but different goals. As we’ve stated in our previous blog, we want to learn each patient’s goals. This again makes every treatment plan unique. One patient wants to get back to everyday life, another wants to return to a recreational activity and some seek to get back to competition. While each goal is equally important the treatment plan needs to be unique in order to help the patient achieve their goal.
Same diagnosis but different ages. We have treated a 6 year old with neck pain, 96 year old with neck pain and probably patients in every decade of life in between.
Finally, same diagnosis but different personalities and tolerances. While some patients prefer or even require a “no pain, no gain” approach others will do better with “no pain for gain” approach. If we match the wrong approach with the wrong diagnosis or personality our patients will not achieve their goals.
Access to unique treatments
To explore the other side of this value, here at Alliance Physical Therapy, we are seeking to be innovative, dynamic and on the forefront of developments in the physical therapy profession as well as the medical world at large. We want to be able to offer our patients the best researched and most effective treatments available.
Dry Needling represents not just one of the most recent advances in the physical therapy world but also one of the most researched and best evidenced treatment options available to treat neuromusculoskeletal pain and disability. You can read more on this in an earlier blog titled, “Dry Needling – what is it?”
Spinal manipulation is another treatment technique that is both well researched and shows very good outcomes when applied to neuromusculoskeletal pathologies. While the research does not support the “subluxation theory” – which states that our spine slips out of alignment causing tension or compression on nervous tissue and thereby damage to all 10 body systems, it does very much support that spinal manipulation can be a quick and effective technique to restore normal joint range of motion and arthrokinematics as well as facilitating a reduction in associated muscle tone and/or spasm. Again there is a previous blog that explores this further “Spinal Manipulation – what is it and is it safe?” written February 22, 2016.
Along with these more advanced treatment techniques we continue to offer more traditional physical therapy modalities such as instrument assisted soft tissue mobilization, various manual soft tissue techniques, joint mobilization techniques, corrective exercises, ultrasound, iontophoresis, TENS, traction, hot packs and cryotherapy. While these are all valuable techniques in their own right, the research and our experience supports that the addition of dry needling and spinal manipulation to these techniques, when appropriate to the patient and the pathology, “gets you better quicker”.
At Alliance Physical Therapy it is our goal to provide our patients access to all the very best treatment interventions under one roof. It becomes more cost efficient and time efficient to see one professional instead of two or three. Especially when our goal is to see you less.
If you’ve tried physical therapy in the past and for one reason or another not gotten the results you were hoping for; instead of writing physical therapy off for you, perhaps try a different kind of physical therapy – one that can offer you a unique treatment plan.
Phil Chamberlain, MSPT, Cert DN
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