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Physical therapy as effective as surgery for torn meniscus and arthritis of the knee
Date:3/21/2013

unctional status and pain as those who had undergone arthroscopic partial meniscectomy surgery.

Patients who were given standardized physical therapyindividualized treatment and a progressive home exercise programhad the option of "crossing over" to surgery if substantial improvements were not achieved. Thirty percent of patients crossed over to surgery during the first 6 months. At 12 months these patients reported similar outcomes as those who initially had surgery. Seventy percent of patients remained with standardized physical therapy.

According to an accompanying editorial in NEJM, "millions of people are being exposed to potential risks associated with a treatment [surgery] that may or may not offer specific benefit, and the costs are substantial." Physical therapist and APTA member Mary Ann Wilmarth, PT, DPT, MS, OCS, MTC, Cert MDT, chief of physical therapy at Harvard University, said, "Physical therapists are experts in improving mobility and restoring motion. The individualized treatment approach is very important in the early phases of rehabilitation in order to achieve desired functional outcomes and avoid setbacks or complications."


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Contact: Erin Wendel
erinwendel@apta.org
703-703-3397
American Physical Therapy Association
Source:Eurekalert

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