Spine & Sports Rehabilitation

While many practices offer basic rehabilitation, no other practice has a physician-led (Physiatrist), expert clinical teams who work 1-on-1 with you throughout your care. At Stroke & Diabetes Center, we know physician-led care makes a significant difference in getting you better. The physiatrist oversees the rehabilitation treatment teams at the Stroke & Diabetes Center which consist of physical therapist, occupational therapist, respiratory therapist, speech & language pathologist, lymphedema therapist, wound care specialist. This means you have access to a physician throughout your care. Physician and nurse practitioner care at Stroke & Diabetes Center is so personal that they will call you back with your test results and discuss your treatment plan.
Stroke & Diabetes Center (SDC) provide specialize non-surgical treatment options. Our PM&R (physical medicine and rehabilitation) physicians are nerve, muscle, bone and brain experts who treat injury or illness non-surgically to decrease pain and restore function. The expert team of clinical specialists, led by a physician, specializes in spine, sports, and musculoskeletal (MSK) injuries. Rather than focus only on surgery, SDC specialists are trained to holistically explore non-surgical rehabilitation to provide you better care with better outcomes.

Conditions treated in our Spine & Sports Rehabilitation Program:

  • sports injuries
  • workplace and workers’ compensation injuries
  • women’s health
  • back problems (herniated discs, spinal stenosis, degenerative disc disease, sciatica, unspecified pain)
  • MSK injuries: neck, ankle/foot, shoulder and knee pain
    Cancer Rehabilitation

    Oncology is a branch of medicine that deals with the screening, diagnosis, treatment and follow-up care of individuals who have cancer. At Stroke & Diabetes Center our specialist physiotherapists can help individuals recover from cancer by minimizing symptoms, increasing mobility and improving overall quality of life.
    A medical professional who practices oncology is called an oncologist. Oncologists can specialize in different areas of cancer care, for example a radiation oncologist focuses on using radiotherapy as a treatment tool. A gynecologic oncologist specializes in cancer that affects the female reproductive system and a surgical oncologist uses surgery to remove tumors.

Diagnosis of cancer conditions

Methods to aid diagnosis of cancer include biopsy, endoscopy, scans and blood tests. A biopsy allows detailed analysis of soft tissue under a microscope and this is essential for identification of cancer. Following computed tomography (CT) scan, medical staff can decide the best possible route of treatment and whether it is possible to surgically remove the tumor.

Symptoms of cancer conditions

Fatigue, unexplained weight loss, fever, excessive sweating and anemia are symptoms often described by an individual prior to a diagnosis of an ontological condition.

Treatment of cancer conditions

Treatment of cancer is dependent upon the nature of the tumor. Medically, treatment options include chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgery, hormone manipulation and pain relief. The risks and implications of having or not having treatment will be discussed with you in detail by a specialist oncologist.

Rehabilitation for cancer conditions

Whether you decide to accept or decline treatment of cancer, it is likely that you will need physical therapy at some stage in your rehabilitation. Physical therapy can help you become strong enough for surgery or radiation therapy. Similarly, it can help you recover from surgery or radiation therapy to help you get back to your previous level of function, ability and mobility. Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation Specialists also work in palliative care to maintain comfort and dignity of the individual during the end stages of cancer.

Your rehabilitation specialists will carry out a thorough physical assessment of your symptoms and main problems areas. The findings of the assessment will be discussed and you will have the opportunity to set some specific goals to achieve during your therapy sessions. The goals will be different for every individual and will be achievable in both the short and long term. Your treatment plan will be based on your problems and the goals set during the assessment. This may include:

  • Symptom management
  • Soft tissue mobilization, stretches and splinting
  • Joint and muscle stretches
  • Fatigue management
  • Muscle strengthening exercises
  • Core stability and balance exercises
  • Cardiovascular exercises
  • Respiratory breathing exercises
  • Provision of home exercise program
  • Education of formal or informal caregivers
  • Positioning
     postural management
  • Provision of appropriate positioning aids, mobility aids and equipment
  • Mobility practice
  • Practice of functional activities

Your rehabilitation specialists will provide you with an exercise program which has been individually tailored to your needs. This may include breathing exercises, lymphatic massage, stretches and muscle strengthening exercises. Your physiotherapist will focus on improving your ability to carry out functional everyday activities for example using cutlery, getting dressed, putting your shoes on, walking and stairs.
Physical therapy has several functional, physical, emotional and cognitive benefits. Some of the benefits of physical therapy include:

  • Reduction in pain and swelling
  • Maintain range of movement at joints and soft tissue
  • Maintain comfort, privacy and dignity
  • Increased mobility and ability to move around
  • Increased independence with functional tasks
  • Increased muscle strength, balance and co-ordination
  • Increased exercise tolerance and stamina
  • Try new aids and equipment that make functional activities easier
  • Learn exercises to do in your own time
  • Learn how to cope with fatigue
  • Decreased risk of secondary complications
  • Why Stroke & Diabetes Center for cancer condition
    At Stroke & Diabetes Center we understand the problems and difficulties an individual can face due to cancer. Our specialist physiotherapists can provide expert treatment to minimize symptoms and maximize function and quality of life.

    • Physical therapy at any stage of cancer
    • Physical therapy alongside medical treatment for cancer
    • Experienced, professional physiotherapists
    • One to one or family/caregivers present during treatment
    • Treatment at home, in clinic, gym or 24 hour care facility
    • No waiting lists
    • Flexible appointment times
    • Holistic care and liaison with all health professionals involved
    • Physical therapy is essential for all individuals who are having physical problems as a result of cancer.Pediatric & Adolescent Rehabilitation Program
      Caring for the whole child
      The Stroke & Diabetes Center treat the whole child, taking into consideration interests and goals, and involving family in our care. Your child will benefit from our unique developmental approach to rehabilitation, which motivates through recreation and functional activities while improving skills. Therapists use developmentally appropriate games, activities, sports and adaptive equipment to strengthen muscles; increase range of motion; and improve coordination, memory, attention span and daily living skills. Your child knows how to have fun, and we know how to focus that energy.

    Our world-class care specially geared toward children and adolescents provides a full range of rehabilitation services, support, tools and equipment to help them grow. Plus, RIC researchers located on the premises are working on the newest developments in pediatric rehabilitation, giving patients early access to groundbreaking advances in treatment.
    Your son or daughter will be in the care of our physicians, nurse practitioners, many of whom have dual specialties in both pediatrics, oncology and physical medicine and rehabilitation, as well as our physical therapists, occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists and nurses who work extensively with children and adolescents. Understanding the importance of social, emotional and developmental issues, our team also includes a child psychologist.
    Family participation is essential to success. Family members provide vital insights to help develop an effective treatment plan and continue progress outside of the hospital. You will be involved in the decision-making and communications for your child. In addition, we will help educate you and family members on the rehabilitation program designed for your child.

    Parkinson’s disease Rehabilitation
    Who is Parkinson’s disease rehabilitation for?

    There is growing evidence that individuals with mild to moderate Parkinson’s disease can benefit from treatment that targets flexibility, strengthening and cardiovascular conditioning.
    Physical activity is an important part of a healthy lifestyle for everyone. These treatments can improve balance, walking and overall functional ability. In addition, therapy may slow down the progression of the disease. Moderate to vigorous exercise/activity should begin immediately upon diagnosis and continue throughout the course of the disease. Evidence also supports that regular aerobic exercise such as walking prevents development of cognitive impairment in healthy elderly individuals and this can hold true in Parkinson’s disease as well.

    What does Parkinson’s disease rehabilitation involve?

    Our clinicians bring a comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach to the patient care management of Parkinson’s disease. Patient-centered care is coordinated among occupational therapy, physical therapy and speech therapy in collaboration with your physician.

    After a thorough evaluation and development of a plan of care, treatment may consist of:

  • Flexibility/stretching and strengthening exercises
  • Fitness (aerobic) activities
  • Strategies to improve mobility: walking, freezing, standing up from chairs, reduce risk of falls
  • Strategies to improve self-care activities
  • Handwriting
  • Stress management
  • Instruction in cognitive strategies
  • Speech training in swallowing as well as rate, control, respiration and phonation
  • Vestibular Rehabilitation

    Vestibular rehabilitation is an exercise-based program, designed by a specialized physical therapist, to improve balance and reduce dizziness-related problems.

    What is vestibular rehabilitation?

    Vestibular rehabilitation is an exercise-based program, designed by a specialized physical therapist, to improve balance and reduce problems related to dizziness.

    Who benefits from vestibular rehabilitation?

    Patients typically referred for vestibular rehabilitation therapy are those diagnosed with dizziness, imbalance, vertigo, Meniere’s syndrome, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), neck-related dizziness, and migraines. Other candidates are patients who have had a stroke or brain injury or who frequently fall.
    Common symptoms that can be helped with vestibular rehabilitation include:

  • Dizziness or blurry vision with head movements
  • Neck tightness, stiffness, and/or pain
  • Imbalance or the need to hold onto objects when walking
  • Headaches
  • Frequent falls
  • Generalized “dizziness, wooziness and foggy head” feelings
  • Vertigo/spinningAt your appointment, a physical therapist will evaluate your symptoms and review your medical history. Your assessment will include all or part of the following areas:
  • Balance and/or leg strength/flexibility
  • Gait (how you walk)
  • Visual stability and mobility
  • Neck mobility and neck and arm strength
  • Positional testing, including an inner ear exam
  • Based on the findings, a plan of care is developed. The goal of your treatment plan is to improve any deficits that were identified. This, in turn, will improve your ability to function in activities of everyday living, reduce your risk for falling, and ultimately, improve your quality of life.

    Wheelchair and Mobility Assessments

    Our Wheelchair Seating and Mobility Assessments are for any patient requiring the use of wheeled mobility in their home, work and community environments.

    The program enables you to try a wide variety of manual and power wheelchairs, seating and positioning accessories and environmental challenges. You can trial the device and make accurate and informed decisions based on its performance.

    The Stroke & Diabetes Center Seating and Mobility Clinic is a specialty clinic that evaluates individuals for their seating and positioning needs. The licensed occupational therapists on our staff have extensive training and experience with complex rehabilitation seating and mobility needs.

    Program Goals

  • Maximize independence and safety in the home and community
  • Improve posture and function in the wheelchair
  • Prevent secondary medical, orthopedic and skin problems caused by improper seating
  • Provide demonstration equipment, simulation of the seating system and diagnostic tools, such as pressure mapping, to optimize comfort and function
    With so many products in the market to choose from, information on the latest technology can be overwhelming.
    Stroke & Diabetes Center keeps abreast of new and innovative technologies and monitors guidelines in the area of seating and mobility. We also work closely with local, certified and credentialed durable medical equipment providers and manufacturer representatives to provide comprehensive, patient-focused options.Services Provided
  • Manual wheelchair evaluation
  • Power wheelchair evaluation
  • Pressure mapping – This is a tool used to determine the weight distribution of a patient’s sitting surface or back, on various surfaces.It also allows the therapist to determine a functional seating system for the patient. The pressure mapping system also assists the therapist in educating the patient and family on the weight shift technique.
  • SmartWheel® assessment – This tool is used to determine the optimal configuration of a custom manual wheelchair, including its center of gravity, wheel placement and the patient’s overall push stroke. The SmartWheel® assessment is used for patients who are having shoulder pain with wheelchair propulsion.
  • Final fitting/delivery – This is the process where the seating therapist, the complex rehabilitation team and patient complete the plan of care by fitting the patient into the recommended equipment. Adjustments are made as needed to ensure that the patient’s seating and positioning needs are being met with the recommended equipment.