The Monday Memo: 4/13/2015

The Monday Memo

April 13, 2015                                                                             PITT DPT STUDENTS

“Pick and Choose”

Imaging can be useful at times.  Ask anyone and they will tell you that on occasion if there is a suspicion of fracture, X-rays are the recommended course of action.  Anyone worth their weight will also tell you that you need at least two views for that course of imaging to be useful.  It is incredibly important to have multiple points of view in order to identify the problem.

 

This idea is not reserved for radiology, however.  It is a good idea to have multiple points of view about every kind of problem, otherwise, you would be surprised how often the same problem keeps walking into your clinic.  The more you go looking for a particular problem, the more you will find it.  For instance, if someone walks in with knee pain the biomechanist will say there is a knee joint problem, the expert in hip therapy will claim there is a hip problem, the podiatrist will explain there is a foot problem, and the surgeon will declare they need back surgery.  All can base their diagnosis on rationale they follow, yet all are drastically different.

 

The same can be found even within the field of physical therapy.  Low back pain can be described by the pathoanatomic model, or the McKenzie model, or the CPR model, or the “let’s cut it open” model.  Experts in the field hold different views even whether to affect a kinetic chain from bottom-up or top-down.  It is a shocking day when a type-A personality realizes that there is not one single way to correctly answer the question, “What’s wrong and how do I fix it?”  The key is to find solace that all viewpoints can be correct in their own time.  But until that time, don’t tie yourself to one mindset.  Pull the golden nuggets from each method and incorporate them into your practice.  Don’t become blinded by one diagnosis you learned about in a weekend seminar.  Instead use that new knowledge and combine it with what you already know, take it out of your toolbox at the appropriate time, and you will be the stronger clinician because of it.

 

SPOTLIGHT:  Congratulations to all of our Marquette Challenge Representatives for putting together a fantastic continuing education course this past weekend, and a great thank you to Dr. Shirley Sahrmann for speaking!

 

-Michael Turnwald

 

Check the Calendar for Class Schedules and Events

Social Media Updates
  • #DPTstudent -  WEDNESDAYS , 9-10pm EST!   Check out #DPTstudent page for details!
  • Unite Physical Therapy Students - If you haven’t yet, please check out the “Doctor of Physical Therapy Students” Facebook page. More than 9,500 students have already joined!
  • Our own page! Pitt Physical Therapy, thanks to the Social Media Team, has created an official PittPT Facebook page!
  • #SolvePT (meets on Tuesdays Twitter from 9-10pm EST)
April 13, 2015 |

The Monday Memo: 3/30/2015

The Monday Memo

March 30, 2015                                                                             PITT DPT STUDENTS

“Keys to Becoming an Expert PT”

Recently, there was an interesting post on the AAOMPT sSIG asking experienced PT’s what they wished they had known coming into their education.  It garnered some great responses, and these are (paraphrased) what the top five were:

  1. Constantly be reassessing yourself and keep an open mind.
    1. It is constantly stressed to people here in Pitt’s program to always reflect and assess the good and bad of every situation.  Realizing a mistake or a missed opportunity is the first step needed in correcting it for the future.  So the next time you treat a patient, come back to it afterward and look at them with fresh eyes, you may see them differently.
  2. Perfect the basics.
    1. Spend time early in your education honing your techniques.  The devil is in the details, and being able to skillfully perform your craft is almost as important as knowing when and where to use it.
  3. Surround yourself with people that are skilled and passionate.
    1. There’s an old saying that if you are the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room.  Challenge yourself with your surroundings, and most importantly, be receptive to what it has to teach you.
  4. Listen to the evidence.
    1. Be able to back your decision, and the evidence is a great place to start.  Use the information that others have given you, and keep in mind that new knowledge is always available.
  5. Love what you do.
    1. Hopefully the easiest of the five, and by far the most critical.  Invest in those around you, take some time for yourself, and relish in the fruits of your labors.  You don’t have to work a single day in your life if you love what you do.

 

Good luck and best wishes in your endeavors!

 

SPOTLIGHT:  Brandon Rodgers and Alex Kemble for planning an incredible spring formal event!

Source: http://www.themanualtherapist.com/2015/03/top-5-fridays-advice-from-5-seasoned.html

 

-Michael Turnwald

 

Check the Calendar for Class Schedules and Events

Social Media Updates
  • #DPTstudent -  WEDNESDAYS , 9-10pm EST!   Check out #DPTstudent page for details!
  • Unite Physical Therapy Students - If you haven’t yet, please check out the “Doctor of Physical Therapy Students” Facebook page. More than 9,500 students have already joined!
  • Our own page! Pitt Physical Therapy, thanks to the Social Media Team, has created an official PittPT Facebook page!
  • #SolvePT (meets on Tuesdays Twitter from 9-10pm EST)
March 30, 2015 |

The Monday Memo: 3/23/2015

The Monday Memo

March 23, 2015                                                                             PITT DPT STUDENTS

“Ducks”

Back in 1992, a cargo ship accidentally lost a container holding nearly 30,000 Friendly Floatees rubber ducks.  The container spilt the friendly bath toys into the Pacific Ocean where they were left to drift wherever the rolling waves would take them.  Scientists quickly discovered that they could track the ducks, using them to study ocean currents.

Twenty-three years later, the ducks are still turning up on shores around the world.  Some have travelled over 17,000 miles.  Ducks have been found from Hawaii, to Hong Kong, to Argentina, Alaska, New York, and even the UK.  Some ducks have even been found frozen in Arctic Ice and have crossed through the Arctic Circle to reach the expanses of the Atlantic.  Twenty-three years later, and they are still washing ashore, sometimes halfway around the world, continents away.

Everything we do in life is a lot like these rubber ducks.  Each action we take, hopefully for the better but occasionally for the worse, is a drop in the great expanses of our world.  They send ripples throughout time and space, carrying our words and actions to people we may never meet and places that we may never even dream of.  And yet though we may never know it, our actions can alter paths, they can shape minds, they can change the lives of those countless masses that will never know our names.

And we as therapists do this daily, without giving a thought.

We as therapists and physicians carry great weight with our actions.  By getting a father out of the hospital bed he had resigned himself the lie in the rest of his life, we may improve his health and quality of life so that his grandchildren have memories with him.  Controlling a woman’s low back pain could allow her to get back to work, so that she can send her daughter to a better school and a better life.  These ripples can turn to waves that you personally may never see, because you only witnessed the drop in the water, the time that you brought about a change in someone’s life.  So set some rubber ducks adrift.  Who knows what they will do.

 

-Michael Turnwald

 

Check the Calendar for Class Schedules and Events

Social Media Updates
  • #DPTstudent -  WEDNESDAYS , 9-10pm EST!   Check out #DPTstudent page for details!
  • Unite Physical Therapy Students - If you haven’t yet, please check out the “Doctor of Physical Therapy Students” Facebook page. More than 9,500 students have already joined!
  • Our own page! Pitt Physical Therapy, thanks to the Social Media Team, has created an official PittPT Facebook page!
  • #SolvePT (meets on Tuesdays Twitter from 9-10pm EST)
March 23, 2015 |

The Monday Memo: 3/2/2015

The Monday Memo

March 2, 2015                                                                             PITT DPT STUDENTS

“PCORI”

Low back pain (LBP) is one of the most costly conditions affecting people in today’s workplace.  It can be subdivided into those suffering from an acute episode of LBP, a prolonged yet subacute episode, and a chronic, disabling LBP syndrome.  For years, work has been done to re-classify LBP in order to better approach its treatment on a larger scale.  Now, LBP will be analyzed to discover what allows a simple tweaked back to become a long-term problem, and we will be studying it in a big way.

 

“Targeted interventions to Prevent Chronic Low Back Pain in High Risk Patients: A Multi-Site Pragmatic RCT,” headed by principle investigator Dr. Anthony Delitto of the University of Pittsburgh, is a large-scale study aimed at describing what may lead acute LBP patients to progress to chronic LBP patients, as well as the effectiveness of physical therapists working alongside PCPs.  The project has been graciously funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, or PCORI, and is half of a recent funding announcement totaling nearly $24 million.  The University of Pittsburgh will coordinate with 12 separate clinics across 5 distinct regions of the United States in this five year project.

 

The project aims to focus on the functionality of the patients involved as well as the healthcare costs associated with the treatment of the patients.  Included in these costs will be the number of x-rays, MRI, and surgeries performed on these patients, all of which have been proven time and again to be of little to no statistical value to LBP sufferers.  This PCORI project coincides with previous research done in Europe but has yet to be tested and applied to patients in the United States. The project is set to be one the largest of its kind in the country, and will make strides to reduce the pain and suffering of people with chronic LBP.

 

-Michael Turnwald

 

Check the Calendar for Class Schedules and Events

Social Media Updates
  • #DPTstudent -  WEDNESDAYS , 9-10pm EST!   Check out #DPTstudent page for details!
  • Unite Physical Therapy Students - If you haven’t yet, please check out the “Doctor of Physical Therapy Students” Facebook page. More than 9,500 students have already joined!
  • Our own page! Pitt Physical Therapy, thanks to the Social Media Team, has created an official PittPT Facebook page!
  • #SolvePT (meets on Tuesdays Twitter from 9-10pm EST)
March 2, 2015 |

The Monday Memo: 2/23/2015

The Monday Memo

February 23, 2015                                                                             PITT DPT STUDENTS

“Empathy is Essential”

Instead of writing a lengthy article this week, I thought it might be interesting to listen to other people’s stories, from their points of view.  Both of these short videos deal with an issue that we as physical therapists will encounter all too often, and the circumstances of these issues can be difficult for both the patient to handle emotionally and we as therapists to understand without ever having to live with them ourselves.  Here are two stories that may give you better understanding about what your future patients are going through, and what innovative breakthroughs are occurring to help change their lives.

 

Maysoon Zayid and her life story of dealing with Cerebral Palsy.

http://www.ted.com/talks/maysoon_zayid_i_got_99_problems_palsy_is_just_one

 

Krista Donaldson and how her experiences pushed her to develop healthcare to reach the third world.

http://www.ted.com/talks/krista_donaldson_the_80_prosthetic_knee_that_s_changing_lives#t-117341

 

SPOTLIGHT:  Congratulations to all of the Pitt faculty involved with the multi-institutional CoHSTAR Project that recently received over $2 million in grant funding for physical therapy research.  Parts of the research will explore the effectiveness of physical therapists as points of primary care for certain musculoskeletal disorders.

 

-Michael Turnwald

 

Check the Calendar for Class Schedules and Events

Social Media Updates
  • #DPTstudent -  WEDNESDAYS , 9-10pm EST!   Check out #DPTstudent page for details!
  • Unite Physical Therapy Students - If you haven’t yet, please check out the “Doctor of Physical Therapy Students” Facebook page. More than 9,500 students have already joined!
  • Our own page! Pitt Physical Therapy, thanks to the Social Media Team, has created an official PittPT Facebook page!
  • #SolvePT (meets on Tuesdays Twitter from 9-10pm EST)
February 23, 2015 |