Apta_logoIn order to better inform health care consumers about the medical choices they confront, a number of specific recommendations have been highlighted in the media of late.  A particular focus has been on the efficacy – or lack thereof – of routine screening for various conditions.

Today the APTA announced its own list of commonly employed but questionable procedures. The list was compiled after convening a panel of experts to assess the feedback received after canvassing its membership. The APTA’s list was released in partnership with the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation’s Choosing Wisely® campaign.

The APTA is the first non-physician group to issue such a list, joining the more than 50 specialty medical societies that have already done so since 2012.

“A well-informed patient is a well-treated patient,” said APTA President Paul A. Rockar, Jr., PT, DPT, MS. “The Choosing Wisely campaign addresses the patient’s role in good health care. We are happy to join this effort to help patients make better-informed choices.”

APTA’s 5 recommendations are as follows:
1. Don’t employ passive physical agents except when necessary to facilitate participation in an active treatment program.
2. Don’t prescribe under-dosed strength training programs for older adults. Instead, match the frequency, intensity, and duration of exercise to the individual’s abilities and goals.
3. Don’t recommend bed rest following diagnosis of acute deep vein thrombosis after the initiation of anticoagulation therapy unless significant medical concerns are present.
4. Don’t use continuous passive motion machines for the postoperative management of patients following uncomplicated total knee replacement.
5. Don’t use whirlpool for wound management.

To help patients understand what those recommendations mean for them, APTA has partnered with Consumer Reports to create a free consumer-friendly summary in both English and Spanish.

The APTA’s complete press release can be found here.

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About the author

Abby serves as the Injury Expert for CBS New York where, since 2010, her Injury Breakdown Blog examines injuries in professional sports. She also blogs on health & fitness as well as sports injuries for Huffington Post, and Recovery Physical Therapy.com, where her blog earned a top ten mention for physical therapy blogs in 2012 @ WorldWideLearn.com. In a ranking of the Top 30 Healthcare Blogs for 2012, Top Masters in Healthcare also rated Abby’s blog in the top three in Physical Therapy! Abby is the founder of Fit-Screen and she welcomes your comments and questions!