10 Diseases that can efficiently be treated by Physical Therapy:
Role of Physical Therapists in Diseases Treatment:
A physical therapist also called a physiotherapist is an important part of the health care team. His job is to treat any disease based on principles of physical therapy and help to alleviate pain or trouble of patient by using his professional knowledge as well as skills. A skilled physical therapist has a central role in moving the patients and helping to lessen the severity of their disease by using manual exercises or electrical devices and facilitating the patients.
In this article, we will discuss some important diseases that can efficiently be treated by using physiotherapy.
List of Diseases:
10 diseases that can efficiently be treated by physical therapy are as follows:
1- Parkinson’s Disease:
It is a nervous system disorder in which there are tremors and unintentional body movements due to overexcitation of excitatory neurons and absence of inhibitory neuron-Dopamine. The patient is presented with cardinal motor and non-motor symptoms having imbalanced posture, shaky hands, little or no movements of certain muscles, and resting tremors in the body. The patient is unable to walk like normal persons. The physical therapist can play his role in reducing the severity of this disease by helping him in maintaining his balance, resistance strength training to bring muscles back to their normal position and work, and other strategies to minimize tremors. So, any patient suffering from Parkinsonism should visit a physical therapist to progress his disease and prevent himself from becoming d on others.
It is the disease of the lymphatic system in which there is excess production of lymphatic fluid as a result of which it starts accumulating in the body and causes edema. The patient is presented with swelling of hands and feet. This disease can harm the body in any way if left untreated. A physical therapist can play his role by using decongestive therapy and try to reduce the swelling as well as preventing further fluid accumulation in the body.
3- Multiple Sclerosis:
This is also a nervous system disease caused due to demyelination and permanent damage to neurons as a result of the autoimmune attack in the body. The patient is presented with blurred vision, dizziness, difficulty in maintaining posture, weakness in lower extremities, and tremors in the body. In this disease, there is muscle wasting and the role of a physical therapist is to restore the gait of the patient, helping him to maintain balance as well as tone the muscle with the help of manual exercises as well as by using certain modalities. Physical therapy has a potent role in decreasing the severity of disease and stabilizing the patient’s condition.
4- Huntington Disease:
It is a rare hereditary disease of the central nervous system which is caused due to rapid breakdown of neurons and this breakdown speeds up with age making the disease worse. The patient is presented with movement, cognitive and psychiatric disabilities and is unable to maintain his balance. The physical therapist can help him to get rid of unintentional movements and enable him to perform everyday functions independently and then start his cognitive behavior therapy to bring him out of personality disorders and obsessions.
It is a disease of the skeletal system in which there is stiffness and joint pain due to the shortage or absence of cartilage. The patient is presented with swelling, pain, stiffness, and painful joint movements. This is more common in females as compared to males. A physical therapist can help the patient in reducing pain by using a pain relief mechanism, improve his joint mobility by increasing its range of motion, and strengthening the neighboring muscles to assist in non-painful joint movements. Physical therapy plays a role of a miracle in this disease by completely resolving the symptoms.
6- Frozen Shoulder:
It is also a disease of the skeletal system in which there is inflammation at the shoulder joint which appears first in the form of stiffness and later on complete immobility of the shoulder joint. The patient is presented with painful neck movements and is unable to move and rotate his arm. The pain is so severe that it starts from the neck and radiates the whole arm length. The frozen shoulder can be completely cured through physical therapy in which a professional physical therapist helps him to get rid of the pain first and then start strengthening exercises at the shoulder joint which causes recovery of a complete range of motion of the arm within some months.
7- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:
This painful disease is caused due to compression of the median nerve at the level of the wrist joint in a specific nerve pathway called carpal tunnel due to which there is a complete or partial loss of movements at the wrist joint. The patient is presented with tingling in fingers and hand and weakness of hand and wrist to such an extent that the hand is unable to hold any object. Physical therapy plays a major role in curing this disease by performing various exercises of muscles of hands, forearm, and wrist. The patient is advised to wear wrist support as long as the disease is not cured completely.
8- Cervical Radiculopathy:
This is a painful disease that is caused due to compression of the nerve caused by herniation of the vertebral disc of any of the cervical vertebrae. The patient is presented with severe pain in the neck that radiates to neighboring muscles, severe headache, and diminished motor reflexes. The patient is advised to wear a hard collar around his neck to limit neck movements and prevent further damage. Physical therapy can help to completely treat this disease by relieving the pain through natural pain-relieving pathway stimulation and strengthening the neck muscles followed by restoration of the nerve root.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a disease in which there is muscle wasting along with impaired breathing. The patient is presented with difficulty in breathing, productive cough, and wheezing. A specialized cardiopulmonary physiotherapist can play his role by strengthening inspiratory muscles with pursed-lip and diaphragmatic breathing and helping him to get relief from shortness of breath and make his breathing normal.
10- Cerebral Palsy:
It is a congenital nervous system disease of children in which the brain of a child does not develop fully and the patient is presented with an inability to walk, hold things, talk, think properly, and behave like normal children. Continuous and supportive physiotherapy can enable him to get relief from muscle pain by strengthening muscles, holding objects by doing repeated exercises of hands, and maintaining posture by certain techniques. In addition to physical therapy, proper speech therapy and cognitive behavior therapy is also mandatory for such patients to enable them to speak and think like normal persons and lessen their dependence on others.
So, we conclude that physical therapy has the power to cure, treat and reduce the severity of many diseases. It is a diversified field in which each patient is treated according to his symptoms, severity, and nature of the disease and is enabled to live a life in which there is minimum pain as well as minimum dependency on others. All the diseases can be treated efficiently if both medical treatment and physical therapy go side by side in the best interest of the patient.