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Frequently Asked Questions

What is outpatient orthopedic physical therapy?

Outpatient orthopedic physical therapy is a specialized form of physical therapy that focuses on the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders, injuries, and conditions. A physical therapist will work with you to create a customized treatment plan to help you regain strength, mobility, and function.


How can a physical therapist help with my orthopedic condition?

A physical therapist is a healthcare professional trained to assess and treat various orthopedic conditions. They will use their expertise in manual therapy, therapeutic exercises, and other modalities to improve your mobility, decrease pain, and promote overall well-being.


What should I expect during my first physical therapy appointment?

During your first physical therapy appointment, your physical therapist will conduct a thorough evaluation, including a detailed history, physical examination, and functional assessment. Based on their findings, they will develop a personalized treatment plan tailored to your specific needs and goals.


How long will my physical therapy sessions last?

Physical therapy sessions typically last between 45 minutes to an hour, depending on your individual needs and treatment plan. Your physical therapist will continually reassess your progress and modify your plan as needed.


How often should I attend physical therapy sessions?

The frequency of your physical therapy sessions will depend on your specific condition and treatment goals. Your physical therapist will recommend a schedule based on your individual needs, which could range from one to three sessions per week.


Will my insurance cover physical therapy?

Most insurance plans cover physical therapy services, but coverage and out-of-pocket costs can vary depending on your specific plan. It's important to verify your benefits with your insurance provider and discuss any financial concerns with your physical therapist.


How do I choose the right physical therapist for my orthopedic needs?

When searching for an orthopedic physical therapist, consider their experience, qualifications, and specializations. Look for a therapist who is licensed, has experience treating your specific condition, and maintains a patient-centered approach.


Do I need a referral from my doctor to see a physical therapist?

In most cases, you do not need a referral to see a physical therapist. However, some insurance plans may require a referral for coverage. It's always a good idea to check with your insurance provider and our clinic to gain more info on your specific plan.


Can physical therapy help prevent future injuries?

Yes, physical therapy can help prevent future injuries by addressing muscle imbalances, improving flexibility, and enhancing overall physical function. Your physical therapist will provide you with the tools and education necessary to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.


What should I wear to my physical therapy appointment?

Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing that allows for easy movement during your physical therapy session. Athletic shoes and attire are recommended, as you will likely be engaging in various exercises and activities throughout your appointment.

What conditions can outpatient orthopedic physical therapy treat?

Outpatient orthopedic physical therapy can treat a wide range of conditions, including sports injuries, post-surgical rehabilitation, arthritis, tendonitis, back and neck pain, joint replacement recovery, fractures, and various musculoskeletal disorders. A physical therapist will assess your condition and create a personalized treatment plan to address your specific needs.


How does physical therapy differ from occupational therapy?

Physical therapy focuses on improving your ability to move and function, while occupational therapy aims to enhance your ability to perform daily activities and tasks. Both types of therapy can be beneficial in treating orthopedic conditions, but your physical therapist will specifically target the underlying cause of your movement limitations and pain.


Can I continue exercising while undergoing physical therapy?

It is generally safe to continue exercising while undergoing physical therapy, but it's essential to consult with your physical therapist first. They will recommend the appropriate types and intensity levels of exercise based on your individual condition and recovery goals.


What types of treatments and techniques do physical therapists use?

Physical therapists utilize various treatments and techniques, including manual therapy, therapeutic exercises, modalities (such as heat, ice, and electrical stimulation), balance and coordination training, and patient education. Your physical therapist will select the most appropriate interventions for your specific needs and goals.


How long does it typically take to see improvement with physical therapy?

The duration of physical therapy treatment and the time it takes to see improvement can vary depending on factors such as the severity of your condition, your adherence to the treatment plan, and your individual response to therapy. Some patients may notice improvement within a few sessions, while others may require several weeks or months of treatment.


Is physical therapy painful?

Physical therapy should not be excessively painful, but some discomfort may be expected as you work through your exercises and treatment plan. Your physical therapist will monitor your pain levels and adjust your treatment accordingly to ensure your comfort and safety.


Can physical therapy help with chronic pain?

Yes, physical therapy can be an effective treatment option for managing chronic pain. A physical therapist will work with you to identify the underlying cause of your pain and develop a comprehensive treatment plan to address it, which may include exercises, manual therapy, and pain management techniques.


What is the difference between inpatient and outpatient physical therapy?

Inpatient physical therapy takes place in a hospital or rehabilitation center and is typically for patients who require intensive, round-the-clock care. Outpatient physical therapy, on the other hand, is conducted in a clinic setting where patients attend scheduled appointments and return home afterward. Outpatient physical therapy is often more flexible and convenient for patients with less severe conditions or who are further along in their recovery.


Do physical therapists collaborate with other healthcare professionals?

Physical therapists often collaborate with other healthcare professionals, such as physicians, surgeons, and occupational therapists, to ensure a comprehensive and coordinated approach to your care. They may communicate with your healthcare team to share information, discuss treatment plans, and monitor your progress.


How do I prepare for my physical therapy appointment?

To prepare for your physical therapy appointment, gather any relevant medical records or imaging studies, make a list of your current medications, and jot down any questions or concerns you may have. Wear comfortable clothing that allows for easy movement and bring your insurance information and identification. Being prepared will help ensure a smooth and productive first session with your physical therapist.

How is physical therapy different from chiropractic care?

Physical therapy and chiropractic care are both healthcare practices that address musculoskeletal issues and pain, but they have distinct approaches and treatment methods. Physical therapists focus on restoring and improving movement, function, and strength through a variety of techniques, including therapeutic exercises, manual therapy, and modalities. They also treat a wide range of conditions, including post-surgical rehabilitation, sports injuries, and chronic pain.

Chiropractic care, on the other hand, primarily focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of disorders related to the spine and nervous system. Chiropractors use spinal manipulation and other manual adjustments to correct misalignments, reduce pain, and improve overall function. While both disciplines can be effective in treating certain conditions, the choice between physical therapy and chiropractic care will depend on your individual needs, preferences, and the specific nature of your condition.


Ready to get started? Contact us today to get out of pain and back into action now!

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2211 5th Ave 
Seattle, WA 98121

P: (206) 693-9929
F: (206) 922-8909

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13112 NE 20th St #400
Bellevue, WA 98005

P: (425) 629-9997
F: (425) 629-9979


332 Burnett Ave S
Renton, WA 98057

P: (206) 693-9929
F: (206) 922-8909

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