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Blog: Physical Therapy & Chiropractic

Pre and Post-operative Physical Therapy for Total Hip Replacement- Forest Hills NY

Pre and Post-operative Physical Therapy for Total Hip Replacement

Total hip replacement (THR) is a surgical procedure to replace a damaged hip joint with a new artificial/prosthetic implant. Physical therapy is essential before and after surgery in order to minimize complications. Therapy also reduces recovery time and restores hip joint function as quickly as possible.

Musculo-skeletal conditions that may require THR

An impaired hip joint can result in pain and motion restriction for daily activities like sitting, standing, walking and commuting. Some of the conditions that could potentially damage the hip joint include:

Rheumatoid arthritis

Signs and symptoms include moderate to severe hip pain and joint stiffness. Since the hip is a weight bearing joint, pain and discomfort in this region can interfere with the ability to walk and result in gait imbalances.

This can trigger several biomechanical adjustments in the lower body and lead to low back pain, knee pain and ankle pain. Over a period, this can cause several limitations in function. It is important to consult with a physician and detect hip joint abnormalities as soon as possible to prevent long-term damage.

Benefits of Physical Therapy

In the event of a scheduled THR surgery, physical therapy can speed up healing and rehabilitation of the hip joint before and after surgery.

Before surgery

A baseline measurement of the strength and flexibility is performed. The patient is educated about precautions to take prior to the surgery and positions / movements to avoid after surgery. Objects and furniture may need to be re-arranged to make sure important objects are within reach.

After surgery

Several procedures and modalities can be used by the physical therapist to facilitate recovery after surgery. These include:

Ultrasound to heal connective tissue (tendons and ligaments).
Manipulative therapy that includes stretching and massage.
Resistance training to build muscle strength.
Cold compress and heat to relax muscle spasms.
Low-level laser use for muscle and connective tissue injuries.
Functional electrical stimulation to restore muscle strength.
The Importance of the Initial Evaluation
Your physical therapist understands that when it comes to your recovery, every little detail matters. That is the reason your therapist will conduct a detailed initial evaluation. This includes objective measurements of the strength, flexibility, and mobility of the hip joints.

The physical therapist will identify functional limitations of the patient and establish a gap between the prior level of function and intended level of function.

Once the physical therapist determines this gap and analyzes diagnostic tests like X-rays and MRI scans, an effective treatment program can be created. This consists of specific procedures and modalities.

Treatment for mild hip problems is generally conservative. It includes medications and physical therapy. Physical therapy can also help before and after THR surgery. After a brief period of hospitalization, the patient may need several weeks, potentially months of physical therapy to achieve full recovery.

If you or someone you know is complaining of hip pain, call our office today. We will do everything we can to help.


Physical Therapy for Shin Splints - Forest Hills NY

Physical Therapy Queens Post: Hamstring Injury

Rapid Recovery from Hamstring Injuries
The hamstring muscles, located at the back of the thigh, are comprised of three muscle groups. Injuries to this muscle are common in athletes participating in sports such as football or basketball. They are also common in ‘weekend warriors’ and individuals who participate in walking, jogging or running without a period of adequate warm up and stretching.
This muscle group allows your knee to bend, and plays a critical role in every activity involving the lower body. Your hamstrings are contracting every single time you take a step, climb a flight of stairs or get in and out of your car.

The anatomy of this muscle group
The three muscle groups that comprise the hamstrings include the biceps femoris, semi-membranosus and semi-tendinosus. A partial or complete tear of either of these muscles is a likely possibility in hamstring injuries.
Cause of hamstring muscle injury
A sudden, excessive stress on this muscle group is a common cause of injury. An individual with a previous history of hamstring injuries is more likely to get re-injured. Hamstring muscle tightness and inadequate warm-up can also cause injuries.

The Role of the Physical Therapist
The role of the physical therapist is extremely important in managing patients with hamstring injuries. Prior to treatment, the therapist will obtain a detailed history and perform a clinical examination to ascertain the degree of injury and the muscle groups involved. This will help create a foundation for a safe and effective treatment program.
If the injury was sustained recently, the therapist will recommend rest, since the primary goal is to avoid an increase in pain and excessive strain on sensitive muscles and ligaments. You may be asked to avoid exercise and in some cases, avoid walking. You may be asked to use crutches for support.
In an effort to deal with the pain associated with such injuries, the therapist may recommend an ice pack and a compression bandage to reduce swelling.

Physical therapists will prescribe and supervise a structured exercise program once the acute injury phase (and the associated pain and swelling) has subsided. These can include –
1. Muscle strength exercises - including static and dynamic strength exercises to help regain strength as quickly as possible.
2. Range of motion - including active and passive range of motion exercises that can be partial, or complete range of motion. This helps maintain mobility and minimize muscle tightness.
3. Provision of support devices - The use of assistive devices like crutches, walkers or canes to walk short distances is helpful for patients during the recovery phase. The physical therapist will help analyze the need for such a device, identify the right device (if needed) and assist in acquiring such a device.

Restoration of Control

In addition to the restoration of strength and mobility, an important objective of physical therapy is the restoration of muscle control and balance following hamstring injuries.
When the hamstrings are injured, the strength ratio between the quadriceps (muscles at the front of the thigh) and the hamstrings is also impacted. Weakness or tightness in the hamstrings (as a result of an injury) can also put you at an increased risk of injury to the ACL, or anterior cruciate ligament, which is a ligament that facilitates with knee stability.
Exercises involving balance, weight bearing and unexpected shifts in direction can improve strength and stability in the hamstring muscles. For an athlete recovering from hamstring injuries, a physical therapist will work on motor control and help train sport-specific movements.
Whether you are a weekend warrior or an athlete suffering from a hamstring injury, physical therapy can help. In fact, the scope of physical therapy extends far beyond hamstring injuries and includes pain relief and restoration of function for any muscle injury in the body.
Give us a call, and we’ll help you regain control of your muscles as quickly as possible.


Our Location: 108-14 72nd Avenue, 4th Flr., Forest Hills NY - (between Queens Blvd. & Austin St.)

Physical Therapy Forest Hills Post: Diabetes Prevention - The Hidden Link

Diabetes mellitus is a worldwide health problem characterized by the body’s inability to break down sugar due to an inefficiency of the hormone insulin.
November is considered Diabetes month in America in an effort to raise awareness about a condition that has a powerful impact on families and communities across the world. According to the American Diabetes Association, the toll of diabetes is significant if left unchecked.
1. Two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke.
2. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure.
3. Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults.
4. The rate of amputation for people with diabetes is 10 times higher than for people without diabetes. About 60-70 percent of people with diabetes have mild to severe forms of nerve damage that could result in pain in the feet or hands, slowed digestion, sexual dysfunction and other nerve problems.

Role of the Physical Therapist in Diabetes

You may be at risk for diabetes, especially if your hemoglobin A1C levels are above the normal limit. Ask your physician if this test is right for you.

Physical activity, healthy nutrition and stress management are important factors in the prevention and treatment of diabetes. Your physician may prescribe medication to assist with the treatment of diabetes.

Your physical therapist can create a safe, progressive exercise program that enables your body to become more sensitive to insulin and effectively remove extra glucose from your bloodstream. The goal is to normalize your blood glucose levels and improve your hemoglobin A1C readings.
Here are just some of the benefits of regular physical activity:
1.     Decrease in blood pressure and cholesterol levels
2.     Reduces the risk for heart disease and stroke
3.     Increase in calorie expenditure to enable weight loss
4.     Boost in energy and ability to perform daily activities
5.     Improved sleep patterns
6.     Stress relief
7.     Strengthening of the heart and better blood circulation
8.     Strengthening of muscles and bones
9.     Better range of motion in joints
10.     Better balance which helps to prevent falls
11.     Happier, healthier, better quality of life
You can experience all these benefits after you consult with your physical therapist.

Five Tips for Safe Exercise

For diabetics, exercise should be a safe, enjoyable and positive experience. When planned correctly, exercise will leave you energized, not fatigued. Here are five exercise tips for individuals with diabetes.
1. It is essential to avoid injuries and remain hydrated. It is also important to have some fast acting sugary food available in the event of hypoglycemia or low blood sugar levels. This is critical for individuals who are on insulin and have type 1 diabetes. As your physical therapists, we can advise you about the best, and safest type of exercise.
2. As a general rule, we will encourage you to warm up for 5 minutes before starting to exercise and cool down for 5 minutes at the end. You will be advised to drink plenty of water before, during, and after activity to stay hydrated.
3. If you feel uncomfortable, you should rest for a few minutes and see if you feel. We’ll train you to understand your energy levels and listen to your body.
4. Use the “talk test” to make sure you are not pushing yourself too hard. If you become short of breath and you can’t talk, then slow down. As your fitness level improves over time, you’ll be able to exercise at a higher intensity and chat with others while you do it.
5. Make sure to wear shoes and clean socks that fit you well. Look inside your shoes before wearing them to make sure there is nothing in them that might hurt you or make you feel uncomfortable. Always examine your feet before and after activity for blisters, redness, or other signs of irritation. Talk to your doctor immediately if you experience pain or notice a blister, cut, or sore.

If you know someone who has diabetes, or is at risk for diabetes, the best thing you can do for them is to ask them do is to call us and schedule an appointment. We are here to help.

Forest Hills Rehabilitation

Physical Therapy Forest Hills Post: Breast Cancer

Can Physical Therapy help Breast Cancer?

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease. Unknown to most people, physical therapy can play a role in the treatment of breast cancer.

Depending on the severity of the disease, extensive chemotherapy and sometimes surgery may be required. Following treatment, patients feel drained and worn out. This can lower the patient’s quality of life by significantly affecting day-to-day function.
Physical therapy helps with pain management, range of motion and muscle function. In fact, the American Cancer Society strongly recommends a structured exercise program and physical therapists are uniquely qualified to assess the need for, plan and implement such a program.

Post Surgery and Long term Care
Broadly speaking, the role of the physical therapist in breast cancer can be divided into two parts: input immediately after surgery, and long term care input.

1. Immediately after surgery
Breast cancer surgery not only involves removal of the affected breast tissue, but can also include the nearby lymph nodes and some blood vessels as well.
Exercise facilitates healing and helps restore function in the affected side. As soon as pain subsides, the physical therapist can help increase range of motion and encourage muscle contractions. Physical therapists will prescribe and teach certain stretching and strengthening exercises for surrounding joints like the shoulder and elbow to maintain mobility and muscle function.
Breathing exercises allow for increased expansion of lungs and movements of joints in and around the rib cage. Postural precautions (not sleeping on the side of the operation for a few days for example) are also provided by the physical therapist.
The prevention of swelling in the lymph nodes (lymphedema) reduces levels of fatigue, helping patients to remain active.
2. Long term treatment
A physical therapist can help patients regain confidence, improve lung capacity, move without pain, remain physically active and live happy, healthy and productive lives. This is achieved using a combination of exercise therapy, manual techniques and home exercise programs.
Patients may also be asked to participate in group exercise activities involving other cancer patients. A social environment is a good way to promote rehabilitation and allow the patient to recover in a relaxed and comfortable environment.

The Road to Recovery

Ask your doctor if exercise is right for you, and if the answer is yes, request a referral to a physical therapist.
Your physical therapist will teach you a gentle, progressive exercise program and will encourage you to work within your pain limits. Wear lose, comfortable clothes as you do some gentle exercises. Never push yourself to the point of pain. Always take long, deep breaths, and never hold your breath while exercising. In the first few weeks of recovery, always exercise under the supervision of a physical therapist.
Physical therapy plays an important role in the road to recovery for patients with breast cancer. Give us a chance to help you, and we’ll show you everything we can do to change your life.
Forest Hills Rehabilitation
(888) 595-7282

Physical Therapy - National Physical Therapy Month

Did you Know? October is National Physical Therapy Month
Patients and physicians all over the world embrace the benefits of physical therapy and it’s impact on quality of life for musculoskeletal impairments. Physical therapists can help with diagnosis, prevention and treatment of disorders related to bones, joints and muscles. Reduction in pain, improvement in mobility, increased confidence and enhanced mood are a few examples of the benefits of physical therapy.

Did you know that October is called ‘National Physical Therapy month’, according to the American Physical Therapy Association?

Why celebrate physical therapy?

Every individual deserves to live a happy, healthy and pain-free life. Unfortunately, injury or illness can impact activities of daily living. Simple tasks like bathing, dressing, sitting and standing can sometimes cause pain. This is where physical therapy helps. Physical therapists can help any individual achieve functional independence and live a healthy lifestyle.

We Are Never Too Busy For Your Referrals
Physical therapists train for several years to understand human anatomy and physiology. The therapist can determine how your bones, joints, muscles and nerves work together to control movement and enable day-to-day activities. This insight allows the therapist to help restore or improve muscle strength, joint mobility and balance allowing individuals to live happy, productive lives.

Using a variety of procedures and modalities, expect the physical therapist to help with recovery from injury, relief of pain and restoration of functional movement.

Manual therapy, therapeutic exercise, aquatic therapy, ultrasound therapy, electrical stimulation and massage therapy are a few examples of the treatment options in the arsenal of your physical therapist.

Another major benefit of physical therapy is rehabilitation of patients over 65. As they get older, patients are more prone to osteoporosis and fractures. Any injury at this age can result in joint and muscle stiffness, along with a host of other complications. Expect the physical therapist to provide an exercise program (and walking aids, if needed) to enable the patient to regain functional independence.

Let Us Help You
If you have been thinking about scheduling an appointment, now is the right time. We’ll make sure to accommodate you as quickly as possible and help you regain a pain-free, healthy lifestyle.

There is a lot that you may not know about the benefits of physical therapy. Give us a chance to show you what we can do to improve your health.

Join us in our celebration, and let us help you. We are your physical therapists and we want to make this month about you, not us. We look forward to working with you.

http://www.ForestHillsRehab.com - Looking for a physical therapist in Forest Hills, Queens? This is the latest video clip from our biweekly newsletter on Physical Therapy.

We are a top physical therapy and chiropractic clinic in Queens providing physical therapy for back pain, physical therapy for neck pain, physical therapy for shoulder pain, physical therapy for knee pain, in addition to most other types of neurologic, orthopedic and degenerative conditions. Check out our website - or give us a call today!

Forest Hills Rehabilitation
108-14 72nd Ave, 4th Flr
Forest Hills NY 11375
(888) 595-7282
(718) 520-8480

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