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A musculoskeletal rehabilitation program is a doctor-supervised program designed for people with impairments or disabilities due to disease, disorders, or trauma to the muscles or bones. Musculoskeletal rehabilitation programs can often improve functional capacity, reduce symptoms, and improve the well-being of the patient.
Some of the conditions that may benefit from musculoskeletal rehabilitation may include, but are not limited to, the following:
Tendon tears, such as Achilles tendon injuries and tears of the rotator cuff in the shoulder
Trauma injuries, such as sprains, strains, joint dislocations, and fractures
Repetitive stress injuries, such as tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome
Joint injury and replacement
Musculoskeletal rehabilitation programs can be conducted on an inpatient or outpatient basis. Many skilled professionals are part of the musculoskeletal rehabilitation team, including any or all of the following:
Other specialty doctors
A musculoskeletal rehabilitation program is designed to meet the needs of the individual patient, depending on the specific problem or disease. Active involvement of the patient and family is vital to the success of the program.
The goal of musculoskeletal rehabilitation is to help the patient return to the highest level of function and independence possible, while improving the overall quality of life — physically, emotionally, and socially.
In order to help reach these goals, musculoskeletal rehabilitation programs may include the following:
Fitting and care for casts, braces, and splints (orthoses), or artificial limbs (prostheses)
Exercise programs to improve range of motion, increase muscle strength, improve flexibility and mobility, and increase endurance
Gait (walking) retraining and methods of safe ambulation (including the use of a walker, cane, or crutch)
Help with obtaining assistive devices that promote independence
Patient and family education and counseling
Stress management and emotional support
Ergonomic assessments and work-related injury prevention
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