Physical therapy or physiotherapy (often abbreviated to PT) is a health care profession that remediates impairments and promotes mobility, function, and quality of life through examination, diagnosis, and physical intervention (therapy using mechanical force and movement).

Physiotherapy is used to expedite recovery in orthopaedic, cardiopulmonary, neurology, pediatrics, geriatrics and sports related injuries. The conditions can vary from sprain, strain, frozen shoulder, post- fracture stiffness, arthritis, low back pain and neck pain to spinal cord injury, stroke, head injury etc.

Physiotherapy rehabilitation aims to optimize patient function and well-being, to help integrate that patient back into their chosen lifestyle activities whether at home, work or leisure. Rehabilitation focus on changes to functional disability and lifestyle restrictions based on the patient’s own goals for functional improvement.

Physiotherapy services at SIRC:

Physiotherapy at SIRC aims for complete rehabilitation of its patients through their active involvement thus helping them to lead a life with maximum functional independence of their own.

Most of the patient at SIRC are SCI patients and they are victims of fall from height and RTA. The patients depending upon their level of injury are:

1. Paraplegic

2. Quadriplegic

Depending upon the level of injury and its extent of damage, their treatment varies. Physiotherapy uses various interventions (manual and modalities) to rehabilitate patients.

The first step in rehabilitation is to assess and evaluate. Then plan is formulated that includes therapies specific to the level and extent of damage of spinal cord.

It is important that spinal cord injury patients get exercises of some form from the beginning. They are prone to various complications such as pressure ulcers, contractures, muscle atrophy, respiratory problems, osteoporosis etc so if there is a total lack of exercise, these risk factors become even more pronounced.

Physiotherapy for spinal cord injury involves exercising and stimulating the nerves and muscles below the level of the damage. This allows patients with spinal cord injury to stay in good physical condition, that way, if a cure becomes available, they will not be too weak to benefit from it.

There are many restorative therapies in physiotherapy for spinal cord injury patients. These include electrical stimulation, biofeedback, bed mobility training, balance training, strength training, gait training etc . Aqua therapy / Hydrotherapy is also an effective mode of treatment for spinal cord injury patients.

With all these therapies, spinal cord injury patients can sometimes restore themselves to earlier functioning. Other times, they can simply keep their bodies from deteriorating and be independent with it by use of some assistive devices.