OrthopedicPT: Opioid Crisis

Why Choose Physical Therapy Over Opioids

5 Important Reasons To Choose PT FIRST Over Opioids According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), sales of prescription opioids have quadrupled in the United States, even though “there has not been an overall change in the amount of pain that Americans report.”

You should choose physical therapy FIRST when: 1. The risks of opioid use outweigh the

rewards. Potential side effects of opioids include depression, overdose, and addiction, plus withdrawal symptoms when stopping opioid use. Because of these risks, “experts agreed that opioids should not be considered first-line or routine therapy for chronic pain,” the CDC guidelines state. 2. You want to domore thanmask the pain. Opioids reduce the sensation of pain by interrupting pain signals to the brain. Opioidsmake it so you can’t feel the pain, but, they do not treat the source of your pain. Physical therapists treat pain by finding the source and restoring movement and function. 3. Pain or function problems are related to low back pain, hip or knee osteoarthritis, or fibromyalgia. The CDC cites “high-quality evidence” supporting exercise as part of a physical therapy treatment plan for those familiar conditions. 4. Opioids are prescribed for pain. Even in situations when opioids are prescribed, the CDC recommends that patients should receive “the lowest effective dosage,” and opioids “should be combined” with nonopioid therapies, such as physical therapy.

5. Pain lasts 90 days. At this point, the pain is considered “chronic,” and the risks for continued opioid use increase. An estimated 116million Americans have chronic pain each year. The CDC guidelines note that nonopioid therapies are “preferred” for chronic pain and that clinicians should consider opioid therapy only if expected benefits for both pain and function are anticipated to outweigh risks to the patient.

“Physical Therapy vs Opioids: When to Choose Physical Therapy for Pain Management.” American Physical Therapy Association. N.p., 15 June 2016. Web. 10 Feb. 2017.



Orthopedic Physical Therapy, Inc. is a unique physical therapy facility in Richmond, VA. Our physical therapists provide care to people with musculoskeletal injuries who strive to return to work, sports, and/or an active, full lifestyle. Our physical therapists are trained to evaluate and treat the source of pain rather than simply treat symptoms. We look at your muscles, joints and entire body as a whole unit. Our clinicians work in tandem with patients to set and reach goals by using innovative strategies, such as dry needling in order to help them attain their highest level of wellness. Each of our clinicians has undergone extensive training in treating musculoskeletal problems. Our physical therapists also have their own specialties. We work as a team to optimize your treatments and progress. - Tracey Adler, PT, DPT, OCS, CMTPT Our Physical Therapists Are Trained To Find & Treat The Source Of Pain!


Made with FlippingBook - professional solution for displaying marketing and sales documents online