Tag Archives: Board Certified PT NJ

TSPT – Back to School 2016

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Do you know how much your child’s backpack weighs? According to the APTA if it’s more than 15 percent of his or her body weight, then it could hurt your child’s back. Millions of students in the United States carry backpacks to and from school, often overloaded with books, supplies and equipment.  Weight of the backpack and improper use can result in injury to the skeletally immature child.

During adolescence kids are going through growth spurts and so their bones and posture are vulnerable to injury.  Injury can result when a child carrying a heavy backpack uses bad posture or shifts there weight abnormally to adapt a heavy load.  These adaptations can cause pain from disk injury, improper spinal alignment and deformity.  In addition, the muscles of neck, shoulder region and lower back can be strained leading to injury.  In more advanced cases, a child may even experience nerve compression and damage.

Some of the warning signs that a problem may be arising include back pain, fatigue, red marks on the shoulders, tingling or numbness in the arms and a shift or leaning in one direction.

The American Physical Therapy Association has set forth guidelines that should be used with backpacks to reduce the risks associated with them.  These recommendations include:

–       Backpacks should be worn on both shoulders for equal weight distribution, and the height  should fall two inches below the shoulder blades and sit at waist level.

–       It should have padded shoulder straps, which distribute the weight in the bag evenly over his/her shoulders.

–       Shoulder straps should fit comfortably on the shoulder and under the arms, so the arms can move freely.

–       The bottom of the pack should rest in the contour of the lower back.

–       Keep the load 10-15% or less of the child’s body-weight.

–       Organize the contents of the backpack by placing the heaviest items closest to the back

–       Carry only those items that are required for the day

TheraSport Physical Therapy can help you and your child choose a proper backpack that fits your child properly.  Additionally, our physical therapists can help your child improve their posture, correct muscle imbalances and manage the pain from improper backpack use.  TheraSport has two board-certified McKenzie credentialed practitioners to help with all spinal related problems.

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TheraSport Physical Therapy – Summer Activity

Now that the weather is warming up people are venturing outside to garden, tend the lawn, and play outdoor sports. It is important to keep in mind,
while enjoying outside activities to be mindful of body positioning and
extensive time doing activities to avoid injury.

Common summer activities such as gardening and lawn care can be damaging to the back and spine. Constantly bending over, twisting, pulling, while doing
these activities after a winter of being sedentary could result in an injury or aggravate a preexisting one.

Just like in sports, it is important to warm up before play, the same goes
for marathon gardening or lawn mowing. Warming up tissues and muscles before you begin working will not only help keep your body healthy it will also diminish the chance of injury.

TheraSport Physical Therapy has two locations in New Jersey. Contact us today to find out more!
WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP, NJ
P.856.256.8393
14 Parke Place Blvd.  #D
Sewell,  NJ  08080
info@therasport.org 

MERCHANTVILLE, NJ
P.856.661.0200
30 W. Maple Ave.
Merchantville,  NJ 08109
info@therasport.org

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Do you feel that you can predict weather with your joint pain?

Do you feel that you can predict weather with your joint pain?

Some people with arthritis feel that their joint pain is increased when it is about to rain or with a total change to weather pattern.

The barometric pressure and temperature change (especially lowering) are key factors to why some people experience arthritic joint pain or in areas of injury. The possibility of this, is a change in the atmospheric pressure and precipitation which could increase swelling in the joint capsule for some people.

So believe it or not, predicting the weather with joint pain has some validity.

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TheraSport Physical Therapy – Baseball

baseball
Sports injuries need attention in order to heal properly. They are not uncommon and can be either acute (sprains, fractures, tears, etc.) or chronic (tendinitis, overuse, etc.)

Contact TSPT today to find out how we can help develop a program to treat your condition and get you back batting in proper form!

Some Common Baseball Injuries Include:

Ulnar Collateral Sprain: This injury involves spraining or tearing of the ligament that stabilizes the inside of the elbow joint. This injury often occurs due to poor mobility/strength in the shoulder or from “over throwing”. Therapy can help this condition unless there is complete tearing which requires “Tommy John” Surgery.

Labral Injury: The Glenoid labrum is a cartilage washer in your shoulder that helps to increase the stability of the joint. Symptoms of labral injury include popping, feeling of instability in the shoulder, and “dead arm” after throwing.

Rotator Cuff Strain: Overhead Athletes are at a higher risk for injury to their rotator cuffs. The rotator cuff is a group of four muscles that help with stability and movement of the shoulder. Overhead motion can pinch these muscles and over stress them causing injury.

Lumbar/Abdominal Strain: Hitting and throwing involves a lot of trunk rotation, which can cause strain in the abdominal and lower back muscles. Therapy can help decrease the pain and increase the strength in this muscle with sport specific exercises.

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TheraSport Physical Therapy – Running

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Sports injuries need attention in order to heal properly. They are not uncommon and can be either acute (sprains, fractures, tears, etc.) or chronic (tendinitis, overuse, etc.)

Contact TSPT today to find out how we can help develop a program to treat your condition and get you back running safe!

Some Common Running Injuries Include:

Iliotibial Band Syndrome: The ITB is a band of fascia that starts in the hip and crosses the outside of the knee. This band can become inflamed due to tightness and repetitive motion. Symptoms include achy pain on the outside of the knee that can become sharp pain with activities like running and stairs. Physical therapy helps to decrease the inflammation and increase ITB flexibility.

Shin Splints: This syndrome is caused by ischemia of the muscles in the anterior compartment of the leg and by small tears in the tissue, following strenuous exercise. Therapy can help to decrease irritation as well as balance flexibility and leg strength, preventing pain.

Stress Fractures: Stress fractures are micro-fracturing of the bone due to repetitive trauma. Common sites of stress fractures include the tibia and in the metatarsals of the feet. These fractures can be caused by stress from training, poor footwear, insufficient ROM/strength, and hard running surfaces. Following a period of immobilization/NWB (non-weight bearing), therapy helps to return the runner to their normal work-out routine.

Hamstrings Strain: More common in the sprinting athlete, a strain of the hamstrings is caused by overstretching and tearing of the muscle. This injury can range from slight tightness/pain in a Grade I strain to a Grade III season ending rupture in which there often is an audible pop! Therapy is paramount in regaining ROM/strength to return the athlete to running.

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Hip Injuries and Hip Impingements

All physical therapists are prepared through education and experience to treat hip injuries. At TheraSport Physical Therapy, our therapists are experienced in treating hip injuries and hip impingement.

We have programs designed strictly for orthopedic and musculoskeletal therapy. Our Board Certified Clinical Specialists in Orthopedic and Sports Physical Therapy will create a program especially for your condition.

 How Can TSPT help with my hip condition?

Once you have been diagnosed with a hip injury or hip impingement from your doctor, our physical therapy team will work with you to develop a plan to achieve your specific goals.

Your Physical Therapist will select a treatment plan in any of the following areas:

Pain Management
Movement Re-Education
Manual Therapy
Muscle Strengthening
Functional Training
Exercise Education

We will set you on a course to maintain the appropriate  lower extremity mobility and muscular strength needed to avoid further injury or to aid in recovery from surgery.

Contact TSPT today to find out more!

WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP, NJ

P.856.256.8393
14 Parke Place Blvd.  #D
Sewell,  NJ  08080
info@therasport.org

MERCHANTVILLE, NJ
P.856.661.0200
30 W. Maple Ave.
Merchantville,  NJ 08109
info@therasport.org

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A Parent’s Nightmare: Teenage Concussion

ON THE LEVEL FALL 2015
A Quarterly Newsletter of the Vestibular Disorders Association
TherasportPhysicalTherapy
          Concussion Therapy

By Dr. Jennifer Liss (with Sherron Laurrell)

Corinne Santana, age 13, is the picture of what makes a parent proud. Her parents, Jennifer MacDermott and Eric Santana, have watched with love and awe as their daughter has handled a medical emergency that introduced the family to the overwhelming topic of teenage concussion.

Corinne is an 8th grader and a cheerleader. On September 20, 2014, she was participating in a cheerleading stunt where she was in the second tier lifting another cheerleader to the top of a pyramid. The girl on the bottom lost her hold because of a weakened wrist that was wrapped in a brace. As the top girl fell, Corinne was clobbered in the back of the head. A few minutes later, Corinne hit her chin on another girl’s forehead. Both Corinne’s mom and her coach knew quickly that something was wrong. She was acting strangely and was unresponsive to questions. Her head was bobbing.

Her mom rushed her to the ER. After a CT scan, she was admitted to the hospital and eventually taken by ambulance to the Regional Trauma Center in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Suffering with intense head and neck pain, the doctors prescribed medications that required heart monitoring. For more than a week, Corinne zoned in and out. She remembers nothing of the accident or the days after. The on-call doctor at their family practice, although very sympathetic, did not have much knowledge about concussion. She recommended Corinne be seen by a Sports Medicine Specialist.

Corinne’s school was even less informed about concussions than the family doctor. The middle school just didn’t know what to do, including the school nurse. On October 2, 2014, Corinne was evaluated by a Rothman Institute Sports Medicine Specialist. Although Corinne’s specialist gave her a 504 (academic) Accommodation Plan, some of her teachers would not cooperate. A few were openly critical of her, saying that she was ”exaggerating” and ” faking” her symptoms. Corinne was depressed, full of anxiety, mentally confused, dizzy and in pain. She first came to see me on October 13th.

As a Certified Specialist in Vestibular Rehabilitation I had begun getting numerous referrals to treat postconcussive syndrome. When I initially started treating these patients four years ago I quickly realized they were different from the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)/ neurological and vestibular populations. They often have a combination of central and peripheral abnormalities. VOR (vestibulo-ocular reflex) retraining, even with extensive modification, did not progress the way my vestibular patients progressed. Many times the patients seemed to have trouble focusing on a target even with their heads still.

After spending extensive amounts of time with concussion specialists, vision therapists, and attending as much continuing education in this area that I could find, I realized that in order to normalize impaired vestibular reflexes, concussion patients first had to be able to clearly focus on a target.

Corinne’s main symptoms upon examination included headache, dizziness, fatigue, and neck pain. Her symptoms increased with reading, copying from the board, math class (always her hardest) and exertion. Instead of beginning my clinical concussion exam with the standard oculomotor exam, I began with monocular accommodative focus (the ability of an individual eye to focus clearly on a target) and found a significant difference between her two eyes. I then assessed for a convergence insufficiency (normal is 4-6 cm) and found that the same eye that had weaker accommodative focus had more difficulty moving medially and maintaining convergence on a target. This affected saccadic eye movement speed, and endurance strongly impacts reading ability. Copying from the board was even more difficult because it involves repetitive head movement combined with visual accommodation between near and far targets.

I treated Corinne twice a week for five months. Her recovery was slow but consistent. 13-year old girls are the slowest youth population to recover from concussion due to their dramatic hormonal changes. However, thanks to Corinne’s consistent efforts in therapy, she successfully graduated on February 5, 2015. She has returned to her middle school life and her cheerleading!

When Corinne’s mom was asked what she has learned from this experience she was very clear. “Speak up if you see something that looks out of place.” After the fact, she remembers seeing the wrist brace on the girl who was supporting her daughter in the pyramid and wondering why she was performing a cheerleading stunt if her wrist was injured. She also feels residual frustration about the lack of school system knowledge about concussions and how to treat patients. She tries hard to strike a balance between letting Corinne be independent and overprotecting her. This is an understandable reaction from a mom who has seen her daughter through such a powerful event. Corinne’s mom plans to educate those around them about the importance of treating teenage concussions seriously and immediately.
Sports Medicine

Jennifer Liss is certified in Vestibular Rehabilitation. She is an Adjunct Professor of Kinesiology at Rowan University in Glassboro, NJ. TheraSport Physical Therapy offices are located in New Jersey, where she has practiced for 16 years. She can be reached at JenLiss@Therasport.org. Sherron Laurrell is a vestibular patient who has been treated by Dr.Liss. They now collaborate on case studies to educate and help others.

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