Physical Agent Modalities for Neurologic Occupational Therapy

presented by Stephen Page

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Physical agent modalities (PAMs) are commonly used in occupational therapy to mitigate impairments that diminish clients’ ability to carry out valued occupations. This introductory course will provide the rationale for the use of PAMs in occupational therapy practice, as well as the rationale, evidence, and basic application of specific, commonly used PAMs treatment modalities that are used in occupational therapy physical function practice. Knowledge gained in this introductory course can be incorporated into creation of treatment plans and patient experiences.

Meet Your Instructor

  • Stephen Page, PhD, MS, OTR/L, FAHA, FACRM, FAOTA

    Stephen Page, PhD, MS, OTR/L, FAHA, FACRM, FAOTA

    Dr. Page’s team develops and tests approaches that increase function and independence after stroke and other neurologic diseases. He has held uninterrupted extramural funding to support his rehabilitative trials for over 15 years, and has produced many "firsts" in neurorehabilitation, developing and showing efficacy of mental practice, portable robotics, modified constraint-induced therapy, functional electrical stimulation, brain stimulation in moderately impaired individuals, and several other innovative strategies in people with acquired brain injuries. This includes eight NIH grants and five grants from the American Heart Association, as well as funding from multiple private organizations and subcontracts. He has also published well over 100 peer-reviewed articles, and has served as guest issue editor for 14 special issues of rehabilitative and neurological journals since 2001, including The Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, The American Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and The Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation. He is a fellow of the American Heart Association, The American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine, and The American Occupational Therapy Association, and a standing panel member on NIH's Function, Integration, and Rehabilitation Sciences Panel. While "translation" is a common buzzword in academic circles, very few clinician scientists make efforts to actually speak regularly with nonscientist audiences (such as clinicians and patients) about their findings. To accomplish such translation, Dr. Page has organized and chaired eight regional, national, and international neurorehabilitation conferences, co-chaired the 2003 and 2004 international, joint meetings of the American Society of Neurorehabilitation / the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine and served on the Board of Directors for these organizations. Locally, he created and co-directed the Ohio Neurorehabilitation Academy, which brings in national speakers to provide all-day, "hands-on" neurorehabilitation education to rehabilitation clinicians from across his region. He also takes great joy in providing lunch and learns to area clinicians, and outside of his region co-develops and co-implements the field's only stroke certification for physical and occupational therapists. This seminar-based program–called the "Certified Stroke Rehabilitation Specialist" (CSRS)–is another way that he translates scientific information to clinicians. You can learn more about this opportunity at www.strokecertification.com. Finally, he has mentored well over 60 students, with almost all of them at least publishing a paper and/or presenting the results of their work at a professional meeting. His mentees have won multiple awards for their work, including four "Outstanding Poster" Awards in the past two years alone at the annual international meeting of the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine, and four capstone awards, won by his mentees in engineering over the past four consecutive years. In 2008 Dr. Page was co-awarded the "Outstanding Mentor" Award from Xavier University.

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Chapters & Learning Objectives

Download Learning Objectives
  1. Rationale and Introduction to Physical Agent Modalities

    1. Rationale and Introduction to Physical Agent Modalities

    This chapter will introduce the rationale for the use of physical agent modalities (PAMs) in occupational therapist practice, including the theoretical foundations of PAMs, their relationship to the occupational therapist practice framework, and consideration of state laws and regulations regarding the use of PAMs in occupational therapy practice.

  2. Electrical Stimulation for Neurological Applications: An Introduction

    2. Electrical Stimulation for Neurological Applications: An Introduction

    Electrical stimulation is commonly used to mitigate pain, reduce spasticity, and increase range of motion in people with neurological impairments. This chapter will review the basic attributes and parameters of electrical stimulation that can be modified by OT professionals, describe the hypothesized mechanisms of electrical stimulation, describe the rationale and evidence supporting its use in clients with neurological impairments, and demonstrate the basic use of electrical stimulation in several basic applications.

  3. Cryotherapy

    3. Cryotherapy

    Cryotherapy is commonly used to mitigate pain, reduce spasticity, and ameliorate other symptoms in people with neurological impairments. This chapter will review the basic attributes of cold, describe its hypothesized mechanisms, describe the rationale and evidence supporting its use in clients with neurological impairments, and demonstrate the basic use of cryotherapy in several basic applications.

  4. Thermotherapy

    4. Thermotherapy

    Thermotherapy is commonly used to mitigate pain, reduce spasticity, and ameliorate other symptoms in people with neurological impairments. This chapter will review the basic attributes of heat, describe its hypothesized mechanisms, describe the rationale and evidence supporting its use in clients with neurological impairments, and demonstrate the use of thermotherapy in several basic applications.