How do you know if your health care provider is doing right by you?
On Friday a patient 0f mine came back for a recheck. I hadn’t seen her in about a month. She had started treatment about 3 months ago and had received 6 treatments before her recheck.
At her recheck she was doing much better, in fact she was now able to lift rain soaked flower pots and could sleep through the night. When she first started treatment she was waking up many times per night due hip pain, and could not tolerate more than 20 minutes or so of light yardwork due to back pain. After receiving exercises for hip weakness based on Chris Powers PhD PT’s research at USC and exercises for multifidus/transverse abdominis/pelvic floor coordination and strength training (core) based upon Paul Hodges PhD PT’s research at the University of Queensland she followed through diligently and is much better.
As I was finishing up treatment with her I remembered back to her first day of treatment when she brought in a thick 3 ring binder notebook. This notebook was FULL of exercise sheets she had received from various gyms and physical clinics in another state, and she wanted to show them to me so I could get up to speed. Very few of the exercises were based on Hodges’ or Powers’ research, and I thought to myself, “how can that be?” How were these exercises missed? and more importantly, what could she have done to get a jump start on knowing what questions to ask about her specific condition and what treatment was best?
One suggestion for future patients as to advance your knowledge about what kinds of treatment are best for your condition is to log onto pubmed, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/ , a centralized database of up to date research and type in your condition are look through the research abstracts which can help you know what the latest findings and treatments are that are relevant for your condition.
For example: type in “low back pain treatment guidelines” and here is the link’s first page http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=low+back+pain+treatment+guidelines
Of if you want to know if a specific kind of treatment is helpful for your condition, such as “physical therapy” for hip arthritis, here is that link: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=physical+therapy+for+hip+arthritis