An initial evaluation will be performed to assess psychological functioning. The psychological evaluation includes an assessment of the patient's pain condition, and related emotional stressors which worsen the condition. Psychological testing is administered to evaluate the patient's level of psychological distress and to assist in the development of a treatment plan. The treatment plan will be determined by the patient's diagnosis and symptoms but is likely to include family therapy as well as biofeedback and self-hypnosis training for pain management.
It is recommended that a licensed physical therapist also evaluate the patient's injury and physical ability to determine the most beneficial treatment approach.
Contraindications for certain physical activities and precautions are noted and a treatment plan is developed for each individual patient based on the diagnosis, symptoms, and patient goals. Treatment modalities such as hot packs and massage will be utilized as needed and an exercise program will be developed to help the patient reach the goals of recovery. Specific benefits of exercise include an increase in natural pain-killing endorphins, an increase in strength, a decrease in depression and feelings of helplessness, and an increase in physical abilities and endurance. Modalities and techniques include electrical stimulation, hot packs, hydrotherapy, massage, paraffin, jobst compression, traction, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS unit), ultrasound, phonophoresis, iontophoresis, fluidotherapy and physical strengthening, and progression utilizing state-of-the-art exercise equipment.