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Orthopedic Excellence of the Spine (New)

Advance your skill set to better evaluate and manage patients with spine-related conditions.

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About this Certificate Program

80% of people will experience spinal pain at some point in their lives. Enhance the quality of care you provide patients who suffer from spine-related conditions by becoming skilled in the best evidence-based approaches available. In this certificate program, you will learn examination and treatment fundamentals through a clinical decision-making paradigm for the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spine and integrate advanced technical concepts to improve clinical outcomes in your practice. The courses teach evaluation and management of patients using the Pain and Disability Drivers model, a holistic approach that addresses social, biological, and physiological factors.

Target Audience

The certificate program is designed to improve clinical outcomes for all clinicians who treat orthopedic-related spine conditions, but it would be especially beneficial for recent graduates, residents in training, individuals who function in a closed system of health care who are interested in designing best treatment pathways, or individuals who are returning to treatment for patients with orthopedic problems.

Goals & Objectives

  • Demonstrate advanced understanding and clinical competency in the evaluation and treatment of spine-related conditions
  • Synthesize course materials to standardize care pathways and reduce clinical variation
  • Practice and apply the best clinical tests to maximize clinical efficiency
  • Compare and contrast intervention methods for each of the spine-related conditions
  • Apply classification models and the latest evidence to optimize treatment choices by clinical presentation

What's Included in the Certificate Program

Courses
Accredited Online Courses*

20 hours of online video lectures and patient demonstrations.

Courses
Interactive Learning Assessments

Case-based quizzes to evaluate and improve clinical reasoning.

Courses
Case Study Interviews

Recorded Q&A sessions between instructors and practice managers.

Section 1: Introduction

3 Chapters

A Primer on Examination and Treatment Metricskeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Orthopedic Excellence Series IntroductionChapter 1

    In this chapter, learners will be introduced to the Orthopedic Excellence Series and the constructs of this series, including the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model. Learners will become familiar with common epidemiological terms and statistics that govern diagnostic accuracy and their clinical application.

  • Helpful Epidemiological TermsChapter 2

    In this chapter, learners will be introduced to terms that are helpful to understand when contemplating valuable information from a patient history, like incidence, prevalence, risk, and prognosis.

  • Screening and DiagnosisChapter 3

    In this chapter, learners will gain a greater understanding of the language of diagnosis and explore the importance of screening, diagnostic accuracy, and quality of diagnostic accuracy studies.

  • Measuring Outcomes and Treatment EffectsChapter 4

    In this chapter, learners will become familiar with the categories of outcome measures and the importance of these measures in performing a thorough patient interview as well as an assessment of treatment effect. Statistics such as minimal detectable change, measures of effect, and floor/ceiling effects will be discussed.

  • View full course details »

Crucial Factors Influencing Health & Recovery in Musculoskeletal Carekeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Our Outcomes Are Worsening: Why?Chapter 1

    Musculoskeletal disorders are the second most common cause of disability. Chronic conditions continue to worsen, and despite millions of dollars in research and thousands of review and guidelines articles, patient-reported outcomes for those with musculoskeletal injuries have worsened. We now recognize that our lack of progress in achieving better treatment results is rooted in the fact that we have failed to focus on identifying and addressing the factors that really do influence patients’ outcomes. This chapter outlines why our outcomes have worsened and what domains are necessary to assess for better outcomes.

  • The Pain and Disability Drivers ModelChapter 2

    The Pain and Disability Drivers model was created to give clinicians an understanding of which domains influence pain and disability. Five domains are discussed: nociceptive, neuropathic, comorbidity, cognitive-emotional, and social/environmental. Within the five domains, learners will be exposed to subclassifications of conditions that influence severity. Interactions among domains is also discussed.

  • Nociceptive Pain DriversChapter 3

    Nociception and pain are two distinct components. Nociception is the sensory nervous system's response to certain harmful or potentially harmful stimuli. On the other hand, pain is an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage or described in terms of such damage. Nociception can cause the pain experience and is deserving of assessment. In this chapter, we describe key nociceptive triggers and associative examination methods for each.

  • Neuropathic Pain DriversChapter 4

    Neuropathic pain arises as a direct consequence of a lesion or disease affecting the nerves or nervous system. Neuropathic pain may be associated with radiculopathy, myelopathy, and peripheral and/or central nervous system hypersensitivity. In this chapter, we describe the key neuropathic descriptors, tests, and measures used for assessment.

  • Comorbidity Pain and Disability DriversChapter 5

    It is well described that comorbidities, sleep hygiene, and severe mental health illness are responsible for mediating health outcomes or worsening outcomes. These factors may influence both pain and disability. Conditions such as osteoarthritis are expected to continue to rise with an increasingly obese, sedentary, and aging population. Standard measurement of these factors should be as principal in a clinical examination as measuring vital signs. In this chapter, we describe key associative examination methods for each.

  • Cognitive and Emotional Pain and Disability DriversChapter 6

    Much research has gone into understanding how moods and cognitions influence pain and disability outcomes. In fact, more than 5,200 peer-reviewed articles per year are published on this specific topic. Moods and cognitions can elicit a pain experience and can mediate outcomes. Moods and cognitions are particularly important when behaviors are changed in the individual. In this chapter, we describe key associative examination methods for cognitions and moods that influence pain and disability. We also discuss the challenges of medicalization of moods and how to reduce this risk in practice.

  • Social and Environmental Disability DriversChapter 7

    Social and environment factors remain the strongest and most elusive of outcomes mediators and moderators. Commonly called "social determinants of health," social and environmental factors can influence outcomes and health-related disability. There is a significant challenge associated with how to measure these factors. In this chapter, we describe key associative examination methods that are transferable for all cultures and populations.

  • View full course details »

A Primer on Exercise and Treatment Prescriptionkeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Navigating the Exercise Prescription Road Map to Healthy RecoveryChapter 1

    This chapter will review the principles of therapeutic exercise and the physiological principles behind how exercise can facilitate tissue healing. Viewers will be introduced to terminology, including mechanotherapy, or the turning of movement into repair. Introduction of common tissue healing times and physiological adaptations will be discussed, including a discussion on mechanotherapy/mechanotransduction and how exercise promotes tissue repair.

  • Prescription Training Principles and Variables Estimated LengthChapter 2

    This chapter will review exercise training principles, including progressive overload, specificity, variation, reversibility, and individualization. Recommendations and basic principles of resistance training in accordance with the American College of Sports Medicine are introduced, including training guidelines for strength, power, endurance, hypertrophy, and plyometric training. Progression in terms of duration, speed, distance, and repetitions will be discussed.

  • Load ManagementChapter 3

    We will discuss the principle of "optimal loading," including characteristics of optimal versus suboptimal loading and tissue-specific loading factors. The POLICE principle is explained with regard to acute injury management.

  • Framework for Exercise Prescription and ProgressionChapter 4

    This chapter will discuss clinical decision-making with regard to initiation, progression, and regression of exercise. Further phases of progression will be focused on extrinsic factors, such as change in stimulus or the environment in which the exercise is performed. A sample exercise progression program is provided to the viewer at the end of this chapter.

  • FITTSBALLChapter 5

    This chapter will introduce the viewer to a more holistic approach to exercise prescription that blends the technical domain with the cognitive-behavioral domain and methods for improving patient adherence to exercise.

  • View full course details »

Section 2: Cervical Spine

3 Chapters

Evidence-Based Examination of the Cervical Spine: An Updatekeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Cervical Spine Dysfunction: Prevalence and Economic ImpactChapter 1

    In this chapter, learners will evaluate the economic impact of cervical dysfunction and consider the prevalence/incidence of cervical pain and how this influences clinical practice. The overall burden of cervical pain is discussed in comparison to other musculoskeletal and nonmusculoskeletal conditions worldwide.

  • Patient History and Outcomes MeasuresChapter 2

    In this chapter, learners will discuss the imperative patient history elements of a neck examination and define which patient history components are affiliated with cervical pathology. Learners will also discuss the most common forms of self-reported patient outcome measures as well as their validity.

  • ObservationChapter 3

    In this chapter, learners will identify the link between observation of posture and neck pain or dysfunction. Learners will also identify benefits of general observation of a patient’s expression of fear, anxiety, or distress.

  • Triage and ScreeningChapter 4

    In this chapter learners will identify the most prevalent red flags, germane during the cervical spine examination. The chapter will compare and contrast the purposes of each diagnostic test for sinister problems. Learners will also analyze the “triggers” that would prompt the use of a test for ruling out a condition and evaluate the benefit of performing these “ruling out” actions first within the examination. Lastly, learners will understand structural differentiation.

  • The Movement ExaminationChapter 5

    This chapter will synthesize the importance of the movement assessment and will contrast the goals of the three primary phases of the initial examination.

  • Palpation, Muscle Endurance, and Physical Performance MeasuresChapter 6

    This chapter will evaluate the benefit of palpation as part of a dedicated clinical examination. Learners will also evaluate the benefit and types of manual muscle testing for the cervical spine.

  • Confirmation-Based Special TestsChapter 7

    In this chapter, learners will understand the language of diagnostic accuracy and will identify the most diagnostic cervical-oriented special tests. The purpose of the chapter is to apply the tests to the appropriate diagnoses for better patient management.

  • View full course details »

Evidence-Based Treatment of the Cervical Spine: An Updatekeyboard_arrow_down

Course

Cervical Spine Examination and Treatment: Cases to Synthesize Learningkeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Case OneChapter 1

    In this chapter, which represents Case One, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case and will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options from previous coursework.

  • Case TwoChapter 2

    In this chapter, which represents Case Two, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case and will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options from previous coursework.

  • Case ThreeChapter 3

    In this chapter, which represents Case Three, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case and will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options from previous coursework.

  • Case FourChapter 4

    In this chapter, which represents Case Four, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case and will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options from previous coursework.

  • View full course details »

Section 3: Thoracic Spine

3 Chapters

Evidence-Based Examination of the Thoracic Spine: An Updatekeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Thoracic Spine Dysfunction: Prevalence and Economic ImpactChapter 1

    In this chapter, learners will evaluate the economic impact of thoracic dysfunction and consider the prevalence/incidence of thoracic pain and how this influences clinical practice. The overall burden of thoracic pain is discussed in comparison to other musculoskeletal and nonmusculoskeletal conditions worldwide.

  • Patient History and Outcome MeasuresChapter 2

    In this chapter, learners will discuss the imperative patient history elements of a thoracic examination and define which patient history components are affiliated with thoracic pathology. Learners will also discuss the most common forms of self-report patient outcome measures as well as their validity.

  • ObservationChapter 3

    In this chapter, learners will identify the link between observed posture and thoracic pain or dysfunction. Learners will also identify benefits of general observation of a patient’s expression of fear, anxiety, or distress.

  • Triage and ScreeningChapter 4

    In this chapter, learners will identify the most prevalent red flags germane to the thoracic spine examination. The chapter will compare and contrast the purposes of each diagnostic test for sinister problems. Learners will also analyze the triggers that would prompt the use of a test for ruling out a condition and evaluate the benefit of performing these “ruling out” actions first within the examination. Lastly, learners will understand structural differentiation.

  • The Movement Examination of the Thoracic SpineChapter 5

    This chapter will synthesize the importance of the movement assessment and will contrast the goals of the three primary phases of the initial examination.

  • Palpation, Muscle Endurance, and Physical Performance MeasuresChapter 6

    This chapter will evaluate the benefit of palpation as part of a dedicated clinical examination. Learners will also evaluate the benefit and types of manual muscle testing for the thoracic spine.

  • Confirmation-Based Special TestsChapter 7

    In this chapter, learners will understand the language of diagnostic accuracy and will identify the most diagnostic thoracic-oriented special tests. The purpose of the chapter is to apply the tests to the appropriate diagnoses for better patient management.

  • View full course details »

Evidence-Based Treatment of the Thoracic Spine: An Updatekeyboard_arrow_down

Course

Thoracic Spine Examination and Treatment: Cases to Synthesize Learningkeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Case OneChapter 1

    In this chapter, which represents Case One, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • Case TwoChapter 2

    In this chapter, which represents Case Two, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • Case ThreeChapter 3

    In this chapter, which represents Case Three, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • Case FourChapter 4

    In this chapter, which represents Case Four, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • View full course details »

Section 4: Lumbar Spine

3 Chapters

Evidence-Based Examination of the Lumbar Spine: An Updatekeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Lumbar Spine Dysfunction: Prevalence and Economic ImpactChapter 1

    In this chapter, learners will evaluate the economic impact of lumbar dysfunction and consider the prevalence/incidence of lumbar pain and how it influences clinical practice. The overall burden of lumbar pain is discussed in comparison to other musculoskeletal and nonmusculoskeletal conditions worldwide.

  • Patient History and Outcomes MeasuresChapter 2

    In this chapter, learners will discuss the imperative patient history elements of a low back examination and define which patient history components are affiliated with lumbar pathology. Learners will also discuss the most common forms of self-reported patient outcome measures, as well as their validity.

  • ObservationChapter 3

    In this chapter, learners will identify the link between observation of posture and lumbar pain or dysfunction. Learners will also identify the benefits of general observation of a patient’s expression of fear, anxiety, or distress.

  • Triage and ScreeningChapter 4

    In this chapter, learners will identify the most prevalent red flags germane to the lumbar spine examination. The chapter will compare and contrast the purposes of each diagnostic test for sinister problems. Learners will also analyze the triggers that would prompt the use of a test for ruling out a condition, and evaluate the benefit of performing these “ruling out” actions first within the examination. Lastly, learners will understand structural differentiation.

  • The Movement Examination of the Lumbar SpineChapter 5

    This chapter will synthesize the importance of the movement assessment and will contrast the goals of the three primary phases of the initial examination.

  • Palpation, Muscle Endurance, and Physical Performance MeasuresChapter 6

    This chapter will evaluate the benefit of palpation as part of a dedicated clinical examination. Learners will also evaluate the benefit and types of manual muscle testing for the lumbar spine.

  • Confirmation-Based Special TestsChapter 7

    In this chapter, learners will understand the language of diagnostic accuracy and will identify the most diagnostic lumbar-oriented special tests. The purpose of the chapter is to apply the tests to the appropriate diagnoses for better patient management.

  • View full course details »

Evidence-Based Treatment of the Lumbar Spine: An Updatekeyboard_arrow_down

Course

Lumbar Spine Examination and Treatment: Cases to Synthesize Learningkeyboard_arrow_down

Course
  • Case OneChapter 1

    In this chapter, which represents Case One, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • Case TwoChapter 2

    In this chapter, which represents Case Two, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • Case ThreeChapter 3

    In this chapter, which represents Case Three, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • Case FourChapter 4

    In this chapter, which represents Case Four, learners will evaluate a defined, comprehensive case. Learners will explore key examination and treatment principles based on the Pain and Disability Drivers Management model, the best examination methods identified from previous coursework, and the best treatment options identified from previous coursework.

  • View full course details »
Instructors
Eric Hegedus

PT, DPT, PhD, MHSc, OCS

Chad Cook

PT, PhD, MBA, FAPTA, FAAOMPT

Alexis Wright

PT, PhD, DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT

CEU Approved

20 total hours* of accredited coursework.
MedBridge accredits each course individually so you can earn CEUs as you progress.

      Our clinic could not be happier with MedBridge.

Amy Lee, MPT, OCS
Physical Therapy Central

       MedBridge has allowed us to create a culture of learning that we were previously unable to attain with traditional coursework.

Zach Steele, PT, DPT, OCS
Outpatient Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation Services

    MedBridge has created a cost-effective and quality platform that is the future of online education.

Grant R. Koster, PT, ATC, FACHE
Vice President of Clinical Operations, Athletico Physical Therapy

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I get CEU credit?
Each course is individually accredited. Please check each course for your state and discipline. You can receive CEU credit after each course is completed.

When do I get my certificate?
You will receive accredited certificates of completion for each course as you complete them. Once you have completed the entire Certificate Program you will receive your certificate for the program.

*Accreditation Hours
Each course is individually accredited and exact hours will vary by state and discipline. Check each course for specific accreditation for your license.

Do I have to complete the courses in order?
It is not required that you complete the courses in order. Each Certificate Program's content is built to be completed sequentially but it is not forced to be completed this way.

How long do I have access to the Certificate Program?
You will have access to this Certificate Program for as long as you are a subscriber. Your initial subscription will last for one year from the date you purchase.

Sample Certificate

Sample Certificate

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