What is Physical Therapy?

Category: Physical Therapy

Most popular types: Home Physical Therapy Outpatient PT Balance and gait training Show all

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See also: Rehabilitation Physical Therapy

Physical therapy (PT) is a component of rehabilitation to build strength, mobility and fitness. PT may be used short term after an injury or long term following traumatic injury or serious illness such as a stroke to regain as much independence and functioning as possible.

Reported purpose & perceived effectiveness
Purpose Patients Evaluations Perceived Effectiveness
Osteoarthritis 398 155
Degenerative disc disease 357 142
Stiffness/Spasticity 268 102
Fibromyalgia 170 107
Balance problems 135 82

Show all 413 reasons taken


  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell

Side effects

Side effects as an overall problem

Side effects as an overall problem
Severity Evaluations
Severe 71
Moderate 135
Mild 192
None 541

Commonly reported side effects and conditions associated with Physical Therapy

Side effect Patients
Pain 83
Fatigue 33
Muscle aches 19
Pain in lower back 19
Soreness 18
Muscle pain 16

Show all 147 reported side effects

Dosages

Based on patients currently going to Physical Therapy

Dosage Patients
120 min weekly 34
60 min weekly 33
90 min weekly 28
180 min weekly 17
weekly 14
45 min weekly 10
60 min monthly 7
30 min weekly 6
270 min weekly 5
40 min weekly 4

See all 47 dosages

Why patients stopped taking Physical Therapy

Multiple reasons could be selected

Reason Patients
Course of treatment ended 602
Did not seem to work 277
Expense 224
Other 217
Side effects too severe 138
Doctor's advice 98
Change in health plan coverage 70
Personal research 12
See all 1174 patients who've stopped going to Physical Therapy

Duration

Currently going to Physical Therapy

Duration Patients
Less than 1 month 2
1 - 6 months 30
6 months - 1 year 35
1 - 2 years 39
2 - 5 years 57
5 - 10 years 58
10 years or more 31

Stopped going to Physical Therapy

Duration Patients
Less than 1 month 199
1 - 6 months 618
6 months - 1 year 145
1 - 2 years 93
2 - 5 years 96
5 - 10 years 17
10 years or more 21
Adherence
Adherence Evaluations
Always 523
Usually 287
Sometimes 94
Never taken as prescribed 35
Burden
Burden Evaluations
Very hard to take 137
Somewhat hard to take 307
A little hard to take 272
Not at all hard to take 223
Cost per month
Cost per month Evaluations
$200+ 141
$100-199 127
$50-99 55
$25-49 44
< $25 251
Not specified 321
Last updated:

95 patient evaluations for Physical Therapy

Aug 1, 2017 (Started Jun 01, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Balance problems)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Parkinson's disease)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Improve mobility)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Freezing of gait)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for dystonia)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 15 min Daily
Advice & Tips: I am putting this in a separate category from my regular workout routine. Since I had DBS, my balance is not as good as it was. SO i My routine consists of 5 things: Spins (for warmup I spin 1, 2, 3, 4 times; 4 sets of these); wobble board exercises (2 min on two feet, one min on each of left foot and right foot); standing heel toe with one foot in front of the other (1 min right foot in front, 1 min left foot in front), and walking on my heels (3 - 5 min)
Cost: < $25 monthly

Jun 25, 2014 (Started Jun 01, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Balance problems)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Parkinson's disease)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for dystonia)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Freezing of gait)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Improve mobility)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Usually
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 30 min Weekly
Advice & Tips: I am putting this in a separate category from my regular workout routine. I do this to reduce dystonia and to reduce freezing. My Home Physical Therapy consists of 5 things: 1. Balance exercises; 2. Walking with weights; 3. Walking on my heels; 4. Walking on my toes; 5. Walking backwards and sideways. Here were the descriptions of what I do: 1. Balance exercises A. Every other day, I swing a 10-lb dumbbell around my waist while standing on one leg -(2 sets of 60 sec each on left leg, one set of 60 sec on right leg). The other day I do the exercises on a wobble board. Most day I also attempt to stand on each leg for 60 sec with my eyes closed (I stand in a corner and put my hands out for balance.B. Spins I spin clockwise once, then counter-clockwise once; then I spin CW twice and CCW twice; then CW three times and CCW three times; then CW five times and CCW five times. I do A before the rest of my workout; I do B before and after. 2. Walking with weights A. I walk with 20-lb dumbbells for about 5 minutes before the rest of my workout. Most days I also walk with 10-lb dumbbells for 5 minutes before the rest of my workout. 3. Walking on my heels. I walk on my heels for five minutes after my workout. 4. Walking on my toes I walk on my toes for about five minutes every other day after the rest of my workout. 5. Walking backwards and sideways. Most weeks I will, a couple of times a week, walk backwards for twp or three minutes, walk sideways to the left for two minutes, and walk sideways to the right for two minutes. I do this after the rest of my workout.
Cost: < $25 monthly

Feb 10, 2014 (Started Jun 01, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Balance problems)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Parkinson's disease)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for dystonia)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Freezing of gait)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 30 min Monthly
Advice & Tips: I am putting this in a separate category from my regular workout routine. I do this to reduce dystonia and to reduce freezing. My Home Physical Therapy consists of 4 things: 1. Balance exercises; 2. Walking with weights; 3. Walking on my heels; 4. Walking on my toes: Here are the descriptions of what I do: 1. Balance exercises A. I swing a 10-lb dumbbell around my waist while standing on one leg -(2 sets of 30 sec each on right leg, 2 sets of 60 sec each on left leg). B. Standing on wobble board (2 sets of 30 sec each on right leg, 2 sets of 60 sec each on left leg). C. Spins I spin clockwise once, then counter-clockwise once; then I spin CW twice and CCW twice; then CW three times and CCW three times; then CW five times and CCW five times. I do A and B before the rest of my workout; I do C before and after. 2. Walking with weights A. I walk with 15-lb dumbbells for 2-3 minutes B. I walk backward with 5-lb dumbbells for 2-3 minutes I do A and B before the rest of my workout. 3. Walking on my heels A. I walk on my heels for one minute before the rest of my workout B. I walk on my heels for five minutes after I'm done 4. Walking on my toes I walk on my toes for about a minute before the rest of my workout
Cost: < $25 monthly

Sep 25, 2012 (Started Jun 01, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Parkinson's disease)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for dystonia)
  • Side effects
    Mild (Uncomfortable)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 30 min Monthly
Advice & Tips: I follow a specific program to reduce my dystonia. See http://home.earthlink.net/~strkl/ for it.
Cost: < $25 monthly

Dec 1, 2011 (Started Jun 01, 2009)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for dystonia)
  • Side effects
    Moderate (Uncomfortable)
  • Adherence
    Usually
  • Burden
    Somewhat hard to take
Dosage: 30 min Monthly
Advice & Tips: My dystonia is worse in my left foot. It becomes pigeon-toed (pointing inward), and tends to twist so that I land on the outside of my foot when walking. In fact, I need to be careful that my ankle doesn't roll over (twisting my ankle). If I concentrate on landing more to the inside of my foot, and trying to keep my foot straight, I can continue to walk for a while. I've worked up to the point where I can walk for a mile or more this way. And I've found that I seem to have built up resistance to dystonia. I can exercise at higher intensity, or for a longer time, before getting dystonia. It used to be that once I went into dystonia, I would have to stop walking or running and finish my workout on an exercise bike or elliptical machine. And I would not be able to walk normally until I took my next dose and waited 30 to 60 minutes for it to take effect. (And it would be preferable to take my next dose immediately, or it would take two hours for me to come on then.) But now, even after pushing through the dystonia, once I shower and change, my dystonia is gone, and I can take my medication on my usual schedule. I do this as part of my regular exercise routine, not as Home Physical Therapy. I've just entered it this way because it seems to be the only way I can do so. I wrote about this in more detail at http://www.patientslikeme.com/forum/pd/topics/100055?post_id=1535080#post-1535080
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 1 helpful mark

Jan 4, 2017 (Started May 27, 2008)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Weakness in legs)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Walking problems)
  • Effectiveness
    Can’t tell (for osteoarthritis)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for multiple sclerosis)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Improve mobility)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Balance problems)
  • Side effects
    Mild (less free time)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 270 min Weekly
Advice & Tips: This program MS-specific rehab program, Total Fitness & Rehab, is truly amazing. I know that I am functioning much better since I started treatment at TRF & it has been inspiring to see dramatic improvements in others. It is definitely a big time commitment, when I'm missing my free time, I just remind myself of all the benefits.
Cost: $50-99 monthly

Sep 10, 2008 (Started May 27, 2008)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Improve mobility)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Walking problems)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Balance problems)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 60 min Weekly
Advice & Tips: It is important to see a physical therapist who has experience in treating neurologic disorders, not just acute orthopedic-related injuries.
Cost: $50-99 monthly

  • 2 helpful marks

Nov 24, 2016 (Started Oct 05, 2016)

  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for Pain around ribs)
  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for myofascial pain syndrome)
  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for Myalgia)
  • Side effects
    Moderate (Temporary increased pain)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Somewhat hard to take
Dosage: 120 min Weekly

  • 0 helpful marks
Last updated:
Showing 3 of 95 patient evaluations for Physical Therapy