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Let's Get Physical: July 2018 Issue

Let's get physical an allied health staffing blog


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12-Year-Old Boy with Profound Learning Difficulties Becomes “Voice for the Voiceless”


Jonathan Bryan is an extraordinary boy who suffers from cerebral palsy and cannot verbally speak or physically write. Because of his profound learning difficulties, educators never taught him how to read or write in school.


It wasn’t until his mom Chantal Bryan began taking him out of school a few hours a day for homeschooling sessions that he learned these skills. With the help of an E-Tran Frame, Jonathan discovered a love of writing, which later enabled him to write his memoir entitled, “Eye Can Write.”


Jonathan’s inspiration for the book was to help other children like him who suffered from learning difficulties and become “a voice for the voiceless.”


A portion of the proceeds from his book will go to the charity organization Teach Us Too, whose mission is to promote educational opportunities for all children, regardless of disability or diagnosis.


The Role of Physical Therapy After Breast Cancer Surgery


One in eight American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and many of those women will undergo surgery that removes part or all of their lymph nodes in the armpit.


This procedure can be problematic for cancer survivors down the road. For one, it can lead to lymphedema, which causes chronic swelling that is oftentimes painful and debilitating. About 30% of cancer survivors suffer from this condition.


In order to mitigate or prevent lymphedema, many cancer survivors are turning to physical therapy. Though therapy can’t treat the condition itself, the most important part is that patients  understand the signs of lymphedema and know their limitations in the aftermath of such severe body trauma.


How to Qualify Pain for Better Patient Care


Measuring pain has been an ongoing struggle for the health care community, the reason being that most patients don’t know how to accurately evaluate their pain.


A new study from the University of Rochester asked patients to rate their pain on the standard 0 to 10 scale, as well as answer the question, “Is your pain tolerable?”


What the researchers found was that 75% of patients who rated their pain between 4 and 7 on the numeric scale, a moderate pain rating, also said that the pain was “tolerable,” meaning they did not require further pain treatment.


Therapists and other health care providers feel obligated to alleviate their patients’ pain, no matter how inaccurately self-assessed. This phenomenon can lead to excessive treatment and prescriptions.

That’s why it’s important to look beyond the numeric scale and prompt patients to qualify their pain. For tips on how to do this, check out the full article.