I happened to get a sneak peak at patients in therapy and wondered, "who really has time to do rehab anymore?" Every now and then I hear about TENS units as a therapeutic option for pain control and rehabilitation. Once upon a time I came across one and played with it for a few minutes which was rather amusing. Without making any effort at all, the muscle under the pads contract and your body contorts accordingly as if you were signaling the movement. These muscle stimulators take the work out of therapy and let the electricity carry the responsibility. It may not be the best method of recovery, but it is certainly an alternative option. For additional information about LGMedSupply's products visit their online customer blog.
Personally, I feel that physical therapy is designed to be strenuous to muscle to help build tone, resistance, and muscle memory. Getting back into routine activities can be difficult without the proper training and many of the patients we see have mixed feelings about their post-operative therapy. Electrical stimulating devices may be a part of that process, but should not replace the participation in other therapeutic activities. As my use of such devices is limited, I would be interested in hearing your experiences with TENS units and the usefulness of physical therapy.
Question of the Week
A 25 year old active male visits your office after experiencing a twisting injury of his right leg during a soccer match. On exam you palpate and hear clicking when performing a McMurray test. There is a negative Lachman's and posterior drawer test. Varus and valgus stressing shows no laxity of the knee joint. The initial step in management for this patient would be to
A. Immobilization with a leg brace
B. Arthroscopy of the affected joint
C. Prescribe cryotherapy and NSAIDs
D. Obtain an X-ray of the knee
E. Order magnetic resonance imaging of the knee
Answer & Explanation